Will Baltimore City Ban Older Port Trucks?

In an effort to help reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions, the Baltimore Office of Sustainability has recommended a ban on older trucks from the Port of Baltimore. This recommendation, which is part of a draft Climate Action Plan, is not supported by all. Both MMTA and the Maryland Port Administration submitted comments expressing opposition to a truck ban. Instead, these entities are encouraging the adoption of an incentive-based program for the eventual voluntary replacement of older trucks.

A copy of MMTA’s comments can be viewed at www.mmtanet.com/Baltimore-City-Climate-Action-Plan-Comments.pdf. Examples of these comments include:

  • The ban is unnecessary: In the Climate Action Plan, Baltimore City highlights an older truck ban implemented by the Port of Long Beach as an effective tool for reducing truck related air pollution. There are significant differences between Baltimore and Long Beach.”
  • The ban will have unintended consequences: The advances in diesel emissions controls have come at significant price to the trucking industry. The additional cost of purchasing new engine technologies and fuel has been estimated to be as much as $4 billion annually. Since 2007 the cost of a Class 8 truck tractor has jumped over 30% directly as a result of these new technologies. Prohibiting older model trucks from accessing the Port takes direct aim at those owner operators who are least likely to have the financial means to upgrade their equipment given these escalating costs.”
  • Other options exist to promote voluntary replacement of older trucks: In lieu of a mandatory ban, there are numerous other options to incentivize older truck replacement on a voluntary basis. Many of these are already underway in Baltimore, such as the 2009 Clean Diesel Program, which replaced, retrofitted or upgraded several pieces of equipment across all Port transportation sectors.

Due to the strong opposition to the ban, the city is planning to revisit its proposal. And it is expected that the ban will be removed.

If you have any questions about the Proposed Baltimore City Ban on Older Trucks, please contact Middleton and Meads by calling 410-752-5588 or click here today!

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