Terra Verde

Terra Verde – June 29, 2007

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A new coalition is taking on pollution from California’s booming ports–by connecting the labor rights of truckers to the environmental rights of port communities. Brian Edwards-Tiekert interviews Doug Bloch of the Coalition for Clean and Safe Ports and Ali Rafiat, a Port of Oakland driver.

California’s Ports are magnets for diesel pollution from ships, trains, trucks, and heavy machinery. And as transnational trade grows, the problem’s gotten worse: levels of diesel soot are already 5 times higher in West Oakland than in other parts of the city, and the amount of cargo passing through the port is expected to triple 2004 levels by the year 2020. As lawmakers and air regulators scramble to cut the pollution, a new community-labor coalition is proposing a novel approach: improve the labor rights of truckers. Brian Edwards-Tiekert interviews Doug Bloch of the Coalition for Clean and Safe Ports and Ali Rafiat, a Port of Oakland driver.