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Air Quality

Blue skies at Port of Long Beach

Reducing the impacts of goods movement on human health and the environment is a top priority for the Port of Long Beach. Sources of port-related emissions include ocean-going vessels, heavy-duty trucks, harbor craft, cargo-handling equipment and railroad locomotives that emit diesel particulate matter (DPM), nitrogen oxides (NOx) and sulfur oxides (SOx), all of which have been known to affect human health and contribute to the formation of smog.

Since 2005, the Port has cut diesel particulates by 84 percent. In addition, nitrogen oxides were down 48 percent and sulfur oxides were down 97 percent over the same period.

Air Quality 101 – What are DPM, NOx, and SOx?
  • Diesel Particulate Matter – Diesel particulate matter, or DPM, is a part of a complex mixture that makes up diesel exhaust. DPM has been identified as a toxic air contaminant based on its potential to cause cancer, premature death, and other health problems.
  • Nitrogen Oxides – Nitrogen oxides, or NOx, are a group of highly reactive gases produced during the fuel combustion process. NOx reacts to form ground-level ozone and smog, and can contribute to respiratory problems.
  • Sulfur Oxides – Sulfur oxides, or SOx, are gases formed when fuel containing sulfur, such as coal and oil, is burned. SOx can form particulates in the air and can contribute to respiratory problems.
Port-Related Sources of Air Emissions
Ships
Ships
Trucks
Trucks
Harbor Craft
Harbor Craft
Cargo-Handling Equipment
Cargo-Handling Equipment
Locomotives
Locomotives
Air Quality Programs
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