All of the Above

Here’s a multiple choice question for you.

Why do you suppose that ports on the East Coast are seeing growth rates as high as 22 percent this year, while on the West Coast the growth rate at the giant LA/Long Beach complex has just about flattened out? Wherein lies the problem(s)?

Could it be that;
• – carriers and terminal operators are getting pressure from every direction to control and reduce diesel emissions?

• – West Coast port authorities are charging carriers too much to utilize their facilities?

• – the unacceptably reduced “lift rate” at the complex has slowed down goods movement along the supply chain?

• – neighboring communities have become openly hostile because terminal operators have shown no regard for the health and welfare of nearby residents?

• – leasing costs to terminal operators for acreage within these terminals is considered excessive?

• – recent jumps in rates by servicing railroads is also considered to be excessive?

• – efforts on the part of port officials to change the ground rules with respect to driver/company relationships have raised the hackles of people on both sides of the Clean Air Action Plan?

• – communities are now insisting that traffic congestion allows for no further growth at the LA/Long Beach complex?

• – carriers have been alerted to threatened “wrongful death” lawsuits because of the recently released study showing that ship pollution may be responsible for as many as 60,000 premature deaths?

• – maybe “all of the above” are contributing to an impending meltdown?

The correct answer is obvious to all but the port authorities. A writer at a West Coast newspaper posed this simple question not too long ago; With all the problems facing them, he asked, why are the port commissioners concerned mainly with their clean truck program?

“They want to expand the port complex!” … was the shocking answer.