Two busiest U.S. ports pledge to clean up diesel emissions

The busiest ports in the nation, Los Angeles and Long Beach, announced an aggressive air pollution control plan, which would make them the cleanest in the world. The $2-billion, five-year plan expects to reduce sooty diesel pollution from cargo ships, trains and trucks by more than 50%, which might result in some loss of business. The plan aims at reducing health risks to dockworkers and communities around the docks and loading facilities, and the region's congested freeways and railroads. The spokesman for the Port of Long Beach expects to lose some business to Mexico, but stated the port was no longer interested in companies which are not interested in cleaning up their pollution. The two ports hope to set the example for all the ports in the Pacific Rim. While 40% of all retail goods imported to the U.S. are shipped through the two ports, together they are also the single largest contributor to smog from diesel engines in the Los Angeles Basin. The plan calls for replacement of the aging short-haul diesel trucks, and will demand international cargo ships to run on low-sulfur fuel within 20 nautical miles of the harbor. Docks will be retrofitted with electrical power for unloading, instead of burning diesel fuel.
[Source: Los Angeles Times]

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