Diesel engines large driver of Fraser Valley air pollution, says report

Fraser Valley Regional District looking at ways of cutting down engine emissions

Diesel engines are one of the biggest polluters in the Fraser Valley, but as local governments look to develop a strategy to protect the air, they’re finding there are few concrete actions to take on their own.

Diesel-powered on- and off-road vehicles – from transport trucks to agriculture and construction equipment – contribute 18 per cent of the total particulate matter in the air and 16 per cent of the greenhouse gases. That diesel particulate matter (PM) is particularly problematic because long-term exposure to it is linked to a higher cancer risk in humans.

The Fraser Valley Regional District is working on a new “air quality and climate protection plan” to reduce emissions in the area.

Transportation emissions make up the bulk of pollution, including about half of all greenhouse gas emissions in the region, according to a report presented last month to the FVRD’s board. Staff have developed a range of actions to try to reduce emissions, including supporting the use of electric vehicles, promoting more efficient driving behaviour and use of cars, and advocating for alternative means of transportation.

But when it comes to diesel vehicles, which are primarily used not for commuting but for business, the FVRD has only limited tools at its disposal.

Mainly, the region hopes to push senior levels of government to address the vehicles, whether by encouraging the province to provide financial rebates to replace or retrofit older equipment, advocating for a new emission inspection program, encouraging them to use cleaner-burning vehicles, or advocating for the monitoring of railway emissions.

Staff suggest considering a couple of local programs that could help, including one that would incentivize residents to replace old lawn equipment with newer low-emission models and another that would provide help to airport staff to reduce emissions from on-ground support vehicles.

Just Posted

VIDEO: Child airlifted to hospital after crash in rural Langley

Jaws of life were used to cut off the roof of a car and free its occupants from a two-car accident.

Sometimes it’s okay to simply try

I feel like a success even though I failed at donating blood

‘Beauty amongst such tragedy:’ B.C. photographer captures nature’s trifecta

David Luggi’s photo from a beach in Fraser Lake shows Shovel Lake wildfire, Big Dipper and an aurora

Air quality advisory continues in the Lower Mainland

Smoke from Interior fires brings fine particulate

VIDEO: Mud racing makes annual Chilliwack stop

Family-friendly North West Mud Racing Association event returns for fourth stop of circuit

Canadians fear for relatives trapped amid flooding in Indian state of Kerala

More than 800,000people have been displaced by floods and landslides

IndyCar driver Wickens flown to hospital after scary crash

IndyCar said Wickens was awake and alert as he was taken to a hospital

Ex-BCTF president ‘undeterred’ after early release from pipeline protest jail term

Susan Lambert and Order of Canada recipient Jean Swanson released early

Fast food chains look to capitalize on vegetarian, vegan trend with new items

Seven per cent of Canadians consider themselves vegetarians and 2.3 per cent identify as vegans

B.C. swimmer halts journey across Strait of Juan de Fuca after hypothermia sets in

Victoria MS athlete Susan Simmons swam for eight-and-a-half hours in 9 C choppy waters

‘Hard on water:’ Smoke not the only long-range effect of wildfires

The project began more than 10 years ago after southern Alberta’s 2003 Lost Creek fire

B.C. VIEWS: Genuine aboriginal rights are misused and discredited

Camp Cloud one of long line of protests falsely asserting title

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to march in Montreal’s Pride parade

Trudeau will end the day in his home riding of Papineau

Most Read