Environmental Health Coalition hosts Climate Change Workshop in Barrio Logan

The Environmental Health Coalition (EHC), located in the Barrio Logan community of San Diego, fights for social and environmental justice, and against environmental racism, “policies and activities of governments, corporations, educational institutions or other large organizations with the power to influence many people that, either intentionally or unintentionally, result in people of color and/or low-income people being exposed to greater environmental hazards.” This work includes several focus areas, including Toxic Free Neighborhoods and Climate Justice.

To ensure the communities they serve have a voice in State of California climate change plans, the EHC recently hosted a climate change workshop for the Environmental Justice Advisory Committee and the California Air Resources Board.  The meeting attracted over a hundred people who  talked about air pollution from the many industries located in their neighborhoods, the impact of climate change, and other topics, and provided ideas and recommendations for the draft update of the CARB Scoping Plan, which defines how California will reduce greenhouse gases to 1990 levels by 2020.

While welcoming the state’s intent to reduce greenhouse gases, Leticia Ayala, EHC Associate Director of the Healthy Kids Campaign noted that “there seems to be a tremendous disconnect between our state’s goals for addressing climate change and local projects that move us further from those goals, such as freeway expansions before investments in better public transit”, and emphasized that “Climate change is a global crisis, and our communities have great ideas and proposed solutions. Now, we need the resources to make things happen.”

To learn more, check out the EHC blog post, Thanks for urging the California Air Resources Boart to Protect #HealthHoods and the San Diego Free Press article linked below.

San Diegans Voice Concerns to State Officials About Air Quality, Environmental Justice, and Climate Change, San Diego Free Press

Port of Los Angeles Announces Zero/Near Zero Emissions Demonstration Project

After losing a ten year battle to build a heavily polluting intermodal railyard next to a residential community, and getting caught secretly violating a court-ordered agreement to implement cleaner technologies, the Port of Los Angeles, now under new management, is taking dramatic action to show they can operate in a responsible, safe, and healthy manner.

In partnership with Pasha Stevedoring and Terminals L.P., and funding from the California Air Resources Board, the port recently announced the Green Omni Terminal Demonstration Project, which use modern, cleaner technologies to dramatically reduce air pollution.

The project promises to clean the emissions from ships using an exhaust treatment system like the Advanced Maritime Emissions Control System, which will eliminate 90 percent of ship emissions. This is a very important move, particularly in light of recent research at the University of Southern California that indicates metals in the diesel exhaust of ships may be damaging the lungs of children.

Among on-shore technologies promised are electric terminal trucks, which are available commercially from vendors like Orange EV, and electric on-road drayage trucks, which are being demonstrated, but not yet sold on the open market.

For more information on this exciting project, see the Port of Los Angeles press release, Pasha, Port of Los Angeles and California Air Resources Board Partner on Green Omni Terminal Demonstration Project.