The Port of Oakland is touting huge drops in diesel emissions from ships and trucks over a 10-year period.
Figures showed the most dramatic improvements in trucks’ performance with a 98% decline in diesel particulate matter detected in the air of neighbourhoods near the port in northern California’s Bay Area over the period of 2005-2015 when a concerted effort was made.
But the improvements in ship-related emissions over the same time were also very impressive, showing a 75% decrease.
The ship numbers improved after policy changes that required vessels to change to cleaner burning fuel when within 200 nautical miles of Oakland and for refrigerated shipping containers at the port to be powered by electric generators rather than diesel ones.
The port also made berthed ships plug into dockside electrical power rather than run their engines.
Rules credited for the dramatic improvement in clean-emission performance by trucks at the port included: banning old trucks; enforcing strict filter requirements; and not allowing trucks to idle.
The Port developed its air improvement plan in conjunction with other interested parties including neighbourhood groups and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).