The Oakland Board of Port Commissioners approved a $15.2 million Comprehensive Truck Management Plan Tuesday, which included a vote to ban older, polluting trucks from the port.
Beginning Jan. 1, 2010, truck models older than 1993 are prohibited from entering the port, while models from 1994 to 2006 must be retrofitted with soot filters.
"The truck ban will demonstrate that the Port of Oakland is very serious about reducing diesel pollution," said Victor Uno, board president. "We are taking an aggressive position to provide maximum assurance that only cleaner trucks will serve our seaport."
The port's truck management program is part of a larger initiative called the Maritime Air Quality Improvement Plan, which maps out a plan to cut diesel pollution by 85 percent in the next 10 years.
"We can now begin implementing components of the program including a truck registry for safety and security as well as facilitating financing for cleaner trucks," said Omar Benjamin, executive director of the port. "All of this is going to lead to a major improvement in the overall trucking industry at the Oakland seaport while at the same time improving air quality for a healthier community."
The Coalition for Clean & Safe Ports was pleased with the ban and applauded the port's future plans.
"The truck ban is an important first step toward cleaner air but alone it is not enough," the coalition said in a statement. "As long as the burden of buying new trucks and retrofits is placed on underpaid, individual drivers instead of the well-capitalized industry, we will fail to achieve the greatest possible environmental and public health gains."
For more information on the Comprehensive Truck Management Plan: www.portofoakland.com/environm/prog_07.asp