The EPA is working on the initial pieces of development programs that will use funding from the Inflation Reduction Act to help reduce emissions throughout port infrastructure in the United States.
The agency is developing two programs aimed at creating zero-emissions operations and transportation at the nation’s ports. One is the Clean Ports Program, which will invest $3 billion in technologies to reduce air pollution at ports and help move the shipping industry toward zero emissions. The other is the Clean Heavy-Duty Vehicle Program, which will invest $1 billion to reduce vehicle emissions near ports, schools, and other truck routes.
The Clean Ports Program builds on the EPA’s existing Ports Initiative, which aims in part to improve the environmental performance of ports. The program will improve port infrastructure while increasing investments in zero-emission equipment and technology, according to the EPA.
The Clean Heavy-Duty Vehicle Program will help offset the cost of replacing heavy-duty commercial vehicles with zero-emissions vehicles. It will also build infrastructure to charge, fuel, and maintain the updated vehicles.
The Inflation Reduction Act was passed in the summer of 2022 and includes nearly $370 billion in energy and environmental programs and incentives. The legislation aims to reduce emissions in the US by 40% based on 2005 levels by 2030.
The law specifically laid out the funds for port emission and energy programs. According to the Environmental and Energy Study Institute, the three largest ports in the US – the ports of Los Angeles, Long Beach, and New York and New Jersey – produced more than 2.5 million tons of carbon dioxide equivalent in 2019.
As part of the announcement for the programs, the EPA is seeking public comment to improve the implementation of the objectives. The EPA said it is looking to understand its understanding of zero-emission trucks and port equipment, including charging and other infrastructure needs, and to what degree these types of technologies are manufactured in the US.
The agency said the information will help it effectively design the programs. The deadline for comment is June 5, 2023.