By Mark Edward Nero
Environmental requirements that Canada’s Port of Vancouver believes will have an immediate impact on air quality and public health in the densely populated Lower Mainland recently went into effect for container trucks serving the port.
Effective Aug. 1, all trucks registered in the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority’s Truck Licensing System are required to have either a diesel oxidation catalyst or diesel particulate filter installed in order to gain access to port facilities.
Currently, there are about 1,750 trucks performing around 30,000 container trips weekly along truck routes in the region and most trucks in the system are already compliant.
To fulfill requirements and maintain port access, trucking companies and independent owner-operators must provide verification of their truck engine age or proof that retrofits have been made to older trucks.
Since the August 1 deadline, around 100 trucks that were in the Truck Licensing System are no longer permitted to access port facilities, according to the port.
“Modernizing the port’s truck fleet is just one way we are contributing to efforts that address climate change and protect the health of local citizens,” port Vice President of Planning and Operations Peter Xotta said.
The installation of diesel oxidation catalysts on trucks with 2006 model engines or older will reduce emissions of diesel particulate matter, a known human carcinogen as defined by the World Health Organization, by about 20 percent.
Truck engines built from 2007 onwards with diesel particulate filters produce 90 percent less diesel particulate matter than older engines, while trucks built from 2010 onwards are known to produce 20 times less nitrogen oxide, a key component of smog, than older engines.