The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has awarded the Port of Los Angeles a USD $800,000 grant to focus on deploying more of the cleanest commercial equipment available whilst moving cargo. The grant will pay between 25 to 40 percent of the cost to replace and upgrade 18 pieces of yard equipment at two Los Angeles container terminals, with the completion due for fall 2018.
This follows the recent news that the Port of Los Angeles has been approved for a $5.8 million state grant in an effort to help the port on their quest to gain zero-emission status.
Gene Seroka, Port of Los Angeles Executive Director, has said “These grants are a major opportunity for accelerating the next-generation solutions we and our partners are working on to transition to a zero-emission port”.
For the ‘green grant’ from the EPA, two terminal operators, APM Terminals Pacific Ltd. and TraPac LLC, are working together to fund most of the development worth $3 million overall. APM Terminals will invest more than $2 million to replace 16 yard tractors with new equipment powered by Tier 4 clean diesel engines. TraPac will spend $174,000 to repower two heavy-duty forklifts with Tier 4 engines.
Commenting on the EPA grant, Seroka explained, “The EPA grant is precisely the kind of support that allows our partners to keep trading up to the greenest equipment on the market”.
Seroka went on to say “We will continue to aggressively pursue these opportunities to further our efforts to use the cleanest equipment available.”
The project is seeking to reduce emissions of nitrogen oxides and diesel particulate matter – pollutants associated with asthma, cancer and premature death – from port-related sources. The annual savings in health costs for Los Angeles County alone are estimated at more than $11 million.
The EPA offers competitive grants under the Diesel Emissions Reduction Act (DERA) to fund projects that use diesel emission reduction technologies approved by the EPA or the California Air Resources Board. The process favours applicants that are actively working to improve the quality of life in nearby communities that may be affected by environmental pollution. Applicants that help their regions attain federal clean air standards are also more likely to be considered.
Diesel emissions have been a major issue for many US ports, with diesel levels currently well over benchmark requirements.