West Oakland residents have long been plagued by polluted air that comes from living near a huge port and three freeways. Rates of asthma and other illnesses are high. In early 2010, the Port of Oakland implemented a program to replace and retrofit the diesel trucks that rumble in and out of the neighborhood to comply with new state laws to reduce pollution.
Researchers at U.C. Berkeley measured emissions before the program started and again in mid-2010, just months after it went into effect.
The researchers found a dramatic change, just in those few months. The Berkeley Transportation Letter reports that "after the first phase of the emission control program took effect in early 2010, black smoke emissions were reduced by about half. NOx emissions also dropped by 40 percent." NOx (nitrogen oxide) is a key contributor to smog.
Read the entire story here.