The head of the Port of Long Beach has urged industry leaders that seaports have a duty to protect their communities from air pollution.
While speaking at the American Association of Port Authorities Legislative Summit in Washington, D.C., Mario Cordero, Executive Director of the Port of Long Beach, addressed a gathering of industry leaders – urging them to commit to “environmental social governance”.
Port authorities need to develop policies to decarbonise and convert cargo-handling and drayage truck fleets to zero emissions, according to the Executive Director. This will then reduce air pollution associated with goods movement.
“We must recognize that protecting the health of our neighboring communities from harmful emissions due to port operations is a paramount responsibility,” said Cordero.
“As port executives you can make a difference, the only question is whether you will choose to make a difference.”
Steven Neal, President of the Long Beach Harbor Commission President, added: “Although we’re always working on doing better, at the Port of Long Beach we’ve shown it’s possible to have both good jobs and environmental sustainability.
“Our diesel particulate emissions are down 90% since 2005, even while cargo has increased more than 20%, because of the landmark Green Port Policy and the Clean Air Action Plan.”
Earlier this year, the Harbor Commissions of the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach adopted spending plans for the Clean Truck Fund (CTF) rate program.
The plans, approved separately by each port, target the development and deployment of zero-emission (ZE) trucks and infrastructure, and move the two ports closer to their CAAP goal of being serviced by a 100 per cent zero-emission drayage truck fleet by 2035.