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Port’s Big Plan to Clean Up the Air And Funding for Truck Retrofits

Press Releases, Seaport
April 15th, 2009

Press Releases

For Immediate Release
April 15, 2009

Port of Oakland's Big Plan to Clean Up the Air and Funding for Truck Retrofits

Port Board Approves Maritime Air Quality Improvement Plan and Up to $5 Million for Truck Retrofits

Oakland, Calif.—April 15, 2009— The Oakland Board of Port Commissioners reached a major environmental milestone at its most recent regular meeting (April 7); approval of the Maritime Air Quality Improvement Plan (MAQIP). The MAQIP is the Port's comprehensive Master Plan to improve air quality related to Port maritime operations through 2020. According to Port of Oakland Executive Director Omar Benjamin, “The Port of Oakland has an 80-year-history of implementing plans to grow the Port’s transportation facilities while providing economic, social and environmental benefits to serve the region and our citizens. We are confident and intend to achieve our goal of reducing the health risk from diesel pollution from Port sources by 85% by the year 2020.” MAQIP is unique because it was developed from the ground up through on-going consultation and input from a multi-stakeholder task force. Port Board President Victor Uno said, “Reducing pollution is vital to the health of our neighbors and our region. Air pollution comes from many sources in the Bay Area and we want to do our part to help reduce diesel pollution from Port-related activities.”

The Board authorized the use of $2 million of Port of Oakland funds to help truckers pay for an emissions filter (DPF – diesel particulate filter) that will reduce diesel pollution, and the use of up to an additional $3 million of Port funds to reduce pollution from trucking at the Oakland seaport. The emissions filters are certified to reduce diesel emissions by 85%. The Port Commissioners approved the funding in support of retrofitting drayage trucks that serve the Port of Oakland, to help truckers meet the new state regulations that begin to take effect next year. The Port Board also approved funding to install 10 diesel particulate filters on Port-owned vehicles in advance of statewide requirements with a goal of reducing diesel emissions from each vehicle by 85%.

Because of the Board approvals, the Port of Oakland will be able to continue moving forward with projects that clean up the air such as installing 10 diesel particulate filters on Port-owned vehicles; and planning and investment to implement shore power (reduce pollution from ships while at dock). According to the March 2008 Health Risk Assessment by the California Air Resources Board (CARB) – the contribution of all Oakland seaport sources to West Oakland health risk from diesel pollution is approximately 16% of which 4% of the total West Oakland health risk from diesel pollution is attributed to Port drayage trucks. 84% of the West Oakland health risk from diesel pollution is due to approximately 4% from Union Pacific Railyard (UP) and about 80% from sources unrelated to Port of Oakland or UP sources.

Richard Sinkoff is the Port’s Director of the Environmental Programs and Planning Division, “This plan (MAQIP) is a valuable tool allowing us to move forward with feasible projects that clean up the air and thereby promote a healthier community. One way we'll reach our 85% goal is by working with our tenants to dramatically cut emissions from ship engines while they’re at dock; another is by continuing to help truckers retrofit or replace their diesel engines.” Sinkoff added, “The MAQIP plan reflects the Port’s core business which is delivering vital transportation services to our region. We rely on regulatory agencies to enforce their regulations. As a transportation services agency, part of the Port’s role is to assist our customers and tenants in the complex task of complying with new emissions regulations that will help clean up the air.”

About the Port of Oakland:
The Port of Oakland oversees the Oakland seaport, Oakland International Airport and 20 miles of waterfront. The Oakland seaport is the third busiest containerport on the U.S. West Coast. Oakland International Airport offers 150 daily nonstop flights to 32 destinations; and the Port’s real estate includes commercial developments such as Jack London Square, as well as hundreds of acres of public parks and conservation areas. The Port of Oakland was established in 1927 and is an independent department of the City of Oakland. Please visit www.portofoakland.com

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Port of Oakland
Marilyn Sandifur, Port Spokesperson
Media & Public Relations Department
(510) 627-1193
msandifur@portoakland.com