Gov. Chris Gregoire today visited the Totem Ocean Trailer Express, Inc. (TOTE) terminal at the Port of Tacoma to view the first round of stimulus-funded projects to reduce port-related diesel emissions.

Through the Department of Ecology, Washington received $1.2 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding to partner with ports to reduce diesel emissions. Terminal operators at the Port of Tacoma received $638,000 of that money to retrofit cargo-handling equipment.

TOTE, which serves the Port's trade with Alaska, retrofitted 25 yard trucks with $121,000 of that money, completing one of the first fleet retrofits in the state. The retrofits reduce diesel emissions by up to 65 percent per vehicle. The work also created one position and funded two additional full-time jobs.

"I want to congratulate TOTE on their achievement, and the Port of Tacoma and the Department of Ecology for their partnership on a job well done," Gregoire said.

These retrofits support the groundbreaking Northwest Ports Clean Air Strategy, adopted in early 2008 by the Port and its regional partners, the ports of Seattle and Vancouver, B.C., to meet jointly established short- and long-term clean air goals for ships, cargo-handling equipment, rail, trucks and harbor craft.

The first report, released last month, called out the early progress achieved by all three ports through their cooperative relationships with customers, tenants, and air and environmental regulatory agencies.

Port of Tacoma tallied the following first year results:

  • 57 percent of the ships that call frequently at the Port met the 2010 goal by using distillate fuel at berth.
  • 47 percent of cargo-handling equipment met the 2010 goal. Also, all diesel equipment at the Port uses ultra-low sulfur fuel or biodiesel blend.
  • All switching locomotives serving the Port use ultra-low sulfur diesel.
  • 86 percent of the short-haul trucks serving the Port met the 2010 goal of 1994 or newer model year emission standards.

These stimulus-funded retrofit investments, as well as another $615,000 awarded in January from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, will support further emission reductions.

About the Port of Tacoma
The Port of Tacoma is an economic engine for South Puget Sound, with more than 43,000 family-wage jobs in Pierce County and 113,000 jobs across Washington state connected to Port activities. A major gateway to Asia and Alaska, the Port of Tacoma is among the largest container ports in North America. The Port is also a major center for bulk, breakbulk and project/heavy-lift cargoes, as well as automobiles and trucks. To learn more about the Port of Tacoma, visit

About Totem Ocean Trailer Express, Inc.
Totem Ocean Trailer Express, Inc., (TOTE) is a privately-owned shipping company operating roll-on/roll-off cargo vessels between the Port of Tacoma, Wash., and Anchorage, Alaska, since 1975. Fore more information on TOTE, please visit

Tara Mattina, Port of Tacoma, (253) 428-8674
Denise Philips, Totem Ocean Trailer Express, Inc., (253) 449-8123