Air District proposal could impact ag exports 

Ag Council recently joined with other organizations from various industry and labor sectors to oppose the South Coast Air Quality Management District’s (SCAQMD) proposed Indirect Source Rule (ISR) emissions caps on activities at the Port of Los Angeles and Port of Long Beach. The caps were proposed as a way to meet requirements under the federal Clean Air Act.

Due to the fact the ports have already achieved substantial emissions reductions, the practical result will be volume caps on the movement of goods into and out of the ports. Therefore, this proposal could hinder exports of agricultural goods while restricting imported goods as well.

Notably, the proposed ISR is counter-productive to the emissions reduction efforts at the two ports and will increase greenhouse gas emissions by forcing cargo to other less environmentally friendly ports in North America.

Concerns relating to the proposed ISR include its effect on our supply chain, the competitiveness of the Port of Los Angeles and Port of Long Beach, and the impact on jobs in California, as well as our economy.

A letter signed by multiple organizations, including Ag Council, in late summer urged the mayors of Los Angeles and Long Beach to review and oppose SCAQMD’s proposed ISR due to its negative impacts.

 
The California State Assembly Select Committee on Ports and Goods Movement also held a hearing in late August where concerns about this issue were raised.

SCAQMD Responds with Extended Timeline
At a meeting on September 15, the SCAQMD extended the timeline on the ISR and delayed a vote on the issue to the second quarter of 2024. Under the revised schedule, draft regulatory language will be released later in 2023.

Importantly, SCAQMD staff recognized the complexity of the ISR issue and acknowledged that multiple groups raised concerns about the preliminary concept of a cap.

To read the letter sent to the mayors, please click here.

Photo of the Port of Los Angeles courtesy of portoflosangeles.org