Port of Vancouver's truck retirement plan goes into effect this September

Jun 15 2022, 9:06 pm

The temporary reprieve for owners of non-compliant, older, higher polluting container trucks that serve Port of Vancouver facilities will end on September 15, 2022.

Vancouver Fraser Port Authority’s “rolling truck age program” was originally set to be implemented on February 1, starting with truck models between 1994 and 2006. But on January 14, after an outcry from the trucking industry, the port followed a recommendation by the federal government to delay the forced truck retirement plan and perform consultation.

Early this year, independent truckers and the trucking industry took issue with the high cost of making the investment to buy lower-emission trucks to replace non-compliant trucks that have yet to reach the end of their operating lifespan.

The policy also comes at a time when the Port of Vancouver is experience extreme shipping delays due to the pandemic changes in consumer demand, and logistical and staffing issues at the port facilities. A new report by the World Bank ranks Vancouver’s port as the world’s third worst port out of 370 ports around the world.

“Global supply chains, including those in Canada, have faced unprecedented challenges in recent months, ” said federal Minister of Transport Omar Alghabra in a statement today. “To ensure communities across Canada receive essential goods on time, our supply chains must remain resilient.”

“Our government welcomes the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority’s decision to introduce a revised Rolling Truck Age Program in September 2022, after an extended consultation period with impacted drayage truckers. This will ensure that the trucking industry has more time to implement the new rules without causing any disruptions to the movement of our supply chains, while also having positive impacts on the environment.”

The new September 15 start date of the program will phase out 2006-year container trucks serving the port. Owners of these non-compliant vehicles will be required to use newer, lower-emission trucks that meet the program’s environmental requirements.

Following the consultation process earlier this year, the port authority has made some concessions to its program, including moving to a 12-year rolling truck age, which adds two years of service for trucks, and means the trucks in the fleet can be a maximum of 12 years old. The program implementation date has also been deferred to allow more time for operators to obtain compliant trucks, and independent operators with trucks aging out in 2022 now have an additional two months to switch to compliant trucks. Additionally, a grace period has been added to account for the delayed delivery of brand-new compliant truck orders.

According to the port authority, about 80% of the 1,800 container trucks that serve the port are already compliant with the program, including 150 vehicles within the past few months.

The program will substantially reduce air emissions from trucking activities in the region, including an estimated 93% decrease in carcinogenic particulate matter, 80% decrease in smog-forming nitrogen oxides, and a 2.5% decrease in carbon dioxide.

“We commend and thank truck owners and companies for working with us on this important program, and we look forward to seeing this program deliver cleaner air for our communities,” said Robin Silvester, the president and CEO of the port authority.

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