July 1, 2017
by Eric Kirkendall
Coalition for Healthy Ports shows dirty diesel trucks are killing residents; demands reinstatement of plan to ban the dirtiest trucks
Photo: Edited image from the Village Voice
The Coalition for Healthy Ports NY NJ, which includes Moving Forward Network members Clean Water Action and the Ironbound Community Corporation, as well as the International Brotherhood of Teamsters union and faculty of the Rutgers School of Public Health, released a very informative report yesterday, and called for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to reinstate a planned ban on dirty diesel trucks manufactured before 2007.
Unless ports set healthier standards, economic pressures generally lead to the use of the very oldest and dirtiest trucks on the roads to haul freight from ports to warehouses, and this problem is exacerbated in and around the Ports of New York and New Jersey by a huge amount of trucking through neighborhoods around the ports.
Diesel exhaust causes a host of diseases, including cancer and strokes, and triggers dangerous and sometimes deadly asthma attacks. Diesel exhaust has been strongly linked to many other diseases, including many serious neurological problems, though the science is not yet advanced enough to prove causality. Just this week a study of 60 million Medicaid recipients showed that the more particulate matter a person is exposed to, the more likely they are to die prematurely. In urban areas, diesel exhaust is the primary source of particulate matter.
The Coalition’s report showed that residents throughout their eight-county study area face an increased risk of premature death due to the failure of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to ban the dirtiest diesel trucks, including residents who live far from the port. For more information, see the original report or news articles linked below.
More information on the study and demands to reinstate the ban on old trucks
Air pollution and health