Board of Harbor Commissioners Implement Environmental Policy

Thursday, October 11, 2001
The Los Angeles Board of Harbor Commissioners, acting on the request of Mayor Jim Hahn to maintain and enhance the quality of life of residents of the harbor area, adopted a historic environmental policy regarding Port of Los Angeles operations and future mitigation measures.

“The Board is proud to establish this new environmental policy which sets as a goal that there will be no net increase in air emissions or traffic impact from future Port operations,” said Commission President Nicholas G. Tonsich. In announcing the new policy, Commissioner Tonsich announced he is directing staff “to return to Board within 60 days with a plan and schedule to carry this program forward.” Port staff was directed to conduct seven separate environmental studies.

Conduct baseline air emission inventory of the Port area focused on diesel particulates; Conduct baseline traffic studies with an emphasis on intersections of critical importance to the communities of San Pedro and Wilmington, and coordinate this effort with the Los Angeles Department of Transportation and CalTrans; evaluate the effects of air emissions, particularly diesel particulates, from Port operations on the local communities and coordinate with appropriate regulatory agencies to define the methodologies; identify effects of Port operation on the environment of San Pedro and Wilmington including but not limited to effects on water quality, transportation, lighting, aesthetics and other community quality of life issues; identify real measures that will reduce the air emissions from Port operational activities; further, staff should identify a plan to implement a program that will provide for quantifiable reductions in diesel particulate from Port operations; and the staff is directed to provide a report that identifies facilities at the port that my pose a risk to the community and document and distribute an evacuation plan for the community, in coordination with the Fire Department and other local, state and federal agencies with authority in this area.

The Board of Harbor Commissioner directed staff to prepare the seven studies so that they may be provided to the Port’s Community Advisory Committee (PCAC) for review by the PCAC and its panel of independent experts (the panel requested by Councilwoman Janice Hahn). Two of the seven studies that deal with air and traffic will be used to establish baselines to ensure the Port achieves the mayor’s goal of maintaining and enhancing the quality of life, Commissioner Tonsich said.

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