LOS ANGELES — Proponents of the Clean Trucks Program being implemented at the twin ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach are prepared for a protracted legal battle even as they have their sights set on expanding the program to new ports.
David Pettit, a senior attorney for the Natural Resources Defense Council who heads the Southern California Air Program, made it clear in his remarks at last week’s Trans-Pacific Maritime Conference that the organization intended to push for clean truck programs to be implemented at a number of the nation’s largest port facilities.
“You could be next,” said Pettit before launching into a list of ports, including Oakland and Houston, the NRDC has targeted for similar efforts.
If there is resistance to banning the dirtiest trucks from servicing ports, Pettit welcomed taking the matter to the legal arena.
“We know where the courtrooms are,” he said.
Opposition to such programs is equally as adamant. Curtis Whalen, executive director of the American Trucking Associations’ Intermodal Carriers Conference, responded to Pettit by suggesting the troubled economy has stopped ports from pursuing major environmental initiatives that could further impede business.
“I do not see a national trend toward the hands-on, redo-the-trucking-industry approach that unfortunately Los Angeles and Long Beach has taken,” he said.
The heated back-and-forth between Pettit and Whalen, which took place at the downtown Westin Bonaventure Hotel & Suites during a session entitled “Trucking Upheaval in L.A.-Long Beach — A National Trend?” reflects the ongoing legal battle between environmentalists, labor unions and trucking groups over the clean trucks program that started Oct. 1 at the Los Angeles and Long Beach ports. The program’s objective is to, by 2012, reduce truck-related pollution at the twin ports by 80 percent through the removal of some 16,000 pre-2007 diesel rigs. Los Angeles-Long Beach is the nation’s largest port system and the main entry point for goods from Asia.
The latest round in the legal battle occurred last Wednesday when a three-judge panel at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in Pasadena, Calif., heard oral arguments concerning an injunction sought by the ATA, a group that represents 37,000 trucking companies nationwide, to halt the program. A district court denied the injunction in September, and the three-judge panel has up to 60 days to decide whether to insist that the district court reconsider that denial.
The Federal Maritime Commission has also gotten involved in the legal wrangling over the clean trucks program. It filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court in Washington last October to block a concession plan being implemented by the Port of Los Angeles and is conducting its own investigation to determine how a $35 fee per 20-foot container being levied to fund the program affects transportation costs and services.
At the heart of the argument against the clean trucks program is a Port of Los Angeles mandate that denies port access to truck drivers not employed by licensed motor carriers. Labor unions and environmental organizations strongly support the mandate and assert it will help ensure trucks are speedily retrofitted or replaced, but trucking groups contend it illegally interferes with interstate commerce and the business of independent drivers, a group that owns an estimated 85 percent of the trucks operating at the ports.
Charles Carroll, executive director of the National Association of Waterfront Employers, alleged that the port of Los Angeles is seeking to control interstate commerce for the sake of a “hidden agenda” to promote the unionization of truckers.
“It is important that the federal courts get this right or we could end up with anarchy and chaos in the intermodal movement of goods,” he said.
Union matters aside, Pettit countered that the Port of Los Angeles’ process is working better to keep emissions in check. He noted that 3,000 clean trucks have been financed by the Port of Los Angeles, compared to roughly 300 by Long Beach.
“What concerns us is the scale [at] which this is going to happen,” he said.
All sides did seem to agree upon one thing — the legal confrontations over the clean trucks program are not ending soon.
“I believe this is going to be settled in the Supreme Court of the United States,” said Carroll. “It may take four or five years.”
EXCLUSIVE: @tomford is opening its first-ever beauty store. The boutique, which opens November 20 in London’s Covent Gardens, was designed with the over-the-top glam Ford is known for. Read the full story on WWD.com, link in bio. #wwdbeauty #wwdnews (📷: Simon Wagner) #TomFordBeauty
New York-based DJ @harleyvnewton threw a party to celebrate the holiday collection of her dress and pajama line @hvn at the Ladurée Beverly Hills. It Girls @katebosworth, @rashidajones and more joined in on the fun, which included cocktails, croque monsieur sandwiches and a photo booth. #wwdfashion (📷: Owen Kolasinski/BFA.com)
For the holidays, @Burberry partnered with 20-year-old artist @blondeymccoy on a series of three outdoor murals in downtown Manhattan. The murals are McCoy’s interpretation of a Christmas eve party, the idea of charity and the spirit of family. His third mural, pictured here, is the most personal. The image depicts McCoy’s grandparents and father in London’s Trafalgar Square in the Seventies. “My work often features lots of sentimental objects.” #wwdeye
For spring 2018, designers applied bold colors and cartoonish motifs on everything from sneakers and belts to key chains. See all the top men’s accessories trends on WWD.com. #wwdtrends (📷: George Chinsee; Prop Styling by @rnasti; Market Editor: @luiscampuzano)
The @dior-sponsored @guggenheim international gala pre-party has a history of drawing cool-girl musical acts to serenade the crowd –– and last night was no exception. @haimtheband performed songs both new and old, and lured a star-studded audience with the likes of Rebecca Hall, Kate Mara, Mamoudou Athie and more. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)
In a partnership between the @metopera and the @englishnationalopera, “Marnie” was born. The opera, with costumes sponsored by @mrporterlive, is an adaptation of the 1961 thriller by Winston Graham. Arianne Phillips, who created the costumes, is no rookie: She’s styled Madonna for her tours and created costumes for a myriad of films in the past. Read WWD’s interview with Phillips, where she talks about her inspiration for the opera’s costumes on WWD.com #wwdfashion
@barneysnyc took a different approach to their holiday windows this year. Instead of Christmas decor, Barneys tapped @thehaasbrothers to tell a story of positivity, gratitude and inclusivity via heartwarming silliness and humor. “It’s about kids and it’s about coming together and being family and loving each other,” said Simon Haas. #wwdfashion (📷: @joshuascottphoto)
Beauty influencer @kandeejohnson makes her foray into hair care with a collaboration with @ogx_beauty — making it the first time that OGX has teamed up for a product creation. The collab includes shampoos and conditioners in three scents. At 39 and a mom, Johnson is a different profile than the emerging social media stars, but is considered one of the pioneers of the digital beauty influencer world. Read WWD’s interview with her on wwd.com, including the strangest beauty product she’s ever tried #wwdbeauty