The shipping companies agreed to pay $53,000 each
The California Air Resources Board has fined two shipping companies for failing to switch from dirty “bunker” fuel to cleaner, low-sulfur fuel when sailing within 24 miles of the California coast, as required by state law.
“Cargo vessels can burn some of the dirtiest fuels on the planet and we need to make sure that their engine emissions don’t reach our coast,” said ARB Enforcement Chief James Ryden. “Our fuel regulation is vitally important because it requires shippers to switch to cleaner-burning fuels that help fight air pollution in our coastal regions and port communities.”
The measure, adopted in 2008, eliminates 15 tons of diesel exhaust – a known carcinogen – daily from ocean-going vessels, and is considered a vital tool in helping to reduce premature deaths and the risk of cancer associated with air pollution in the state’s busy ports and trade corridors.
In November 2010, two vessels, both used bunker fuel well within the 24-mile limit from the coast prior to docking at the Port of Long Beach.
As part of their settlements with ARB, two shipping companies agreed to pay $53,000 each, to the California Air Pollution Control Fund (CAPCF) to support air quality research. They must also follow all fuel switchover requirements, and maintain accurate records.
The ARB conducts an estimated 250 ship inspections each year, checking for proper fuel usage, record-keeping and other compliance requirements, and takes marine gas oil or marine diesel oil samples for submission to the ARB laboratory to determine if the fuels meet ARB’s low-sulfur standards.
Source: California Air Resources Board