UPDATED: Setback - ACT NOW: Protect SoCal Ports at AQMD Hearing

UPDATE 2.3.13: Over the objections from BizFed and officials at Los Angeles and Long Beach harbors, AQMD voted 8-3 Friday to increase its environmental oversight at the nation's largest port complex, advancing this "backstop measure" that will kick in if the ports don't meet their emission-reduction goals. AQMD staff will now create a reduction plan that the ports would follow if they fall short of reaching their long-standing emission-reduction goals. BizFed members and the Ports are evaluating options. Stay tuned for more.

Read the full story in the Daily News here.

When the South Coast Air Quality Management District Governing Board approved new air quality rules in December, they delayed action on an unnecessary and controversial measure that would harm the Port of Los Angeles and the Port of Long Beach, thanks to the advocacy efforts of many in the business community.

These ports are critical to our region’s economic success, and they have been working collaboratively with the South Coast Air Quality Management District to be excellent stewards of the environment. Continuing that spirit of collaboration, the ports are proposing an alternative to harmful new regulations – a formal Multi-Agency Agreement that would ensure the ports continue to meet clean air standards without creating unnecessary economic harm. (A copy of that proposed agreement is here.)

Some in the environmental community are organizing to force job-killing regulations on our ports. (Click here to see what they’re doing.) The AQMD Governing Board will vote on whether to move forward with these regulations at their meeting on Friday.

In addition to recommended actions (left), we urge personal outreach to Board members over the next week.

And use this template letter, below, to write a letter from your organization to the AQMD Governing Board urging them to support the Multi-Agency Agreement instead of unnecessary and counterproductive new regulations on our Ports.


Board of Directors South Coast Air Quality Management District

21865 Copley Drive

Diamond Bar, CA 91765


Dear Chairman Burke and Members of the Governing Board:

We urge you to support the Multi-Agency Agreement (Agreement) approach as proposed by the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. These ports are a critical economic engine and have demonstrated their commitment to aggressive emission reduction goals through the establishment of the Clean Air Action Plan (CAAP). 

Between 2005 and 2011 emissions from port-related sources were reduced by 73 percent for diesel particulate matter (DPM) and by 50 percent for nitrogen oxides (NOx). The CAAP is proof that a collaborative effort between the ports, the business community, and regulatory agencies is the right strategy for reducing harmful air emissions.

Unfortunately, the proposed rule outlined in Measure IND-01 of the Draft 2012 Air Quality Management Plan (AQMP) fails to acknowledge the collaborative spirit of the CAAP and its significant success. As drafted, there are no emission reductions associated with IND-01 and its inclusion is not necessary for the AQMD to meet its AQMP emission goals.

As an alternative to this proposed regulation, we support the Agreement proposed by the Ports. We believe that the Agreement serves as an effective framework for achieving our shared goals.  The Agreement also goes beyond the CAAP and ensures that that Ports remain committed to a process that will identify any emissions shortfall and the method that will be used to address any shortfall.

The [Organization Name] and our [Number of Members] members support your efforts to make this region’s air safer for all to breathe.  We believe that the proposed Agreement is fair and appropriately holds parties accountable to work together to ensure that emission reduction goals are met.  We respectfully urge you to support the multi-agency agreement approach as proposed by the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach.