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Port of Los Angeles

How good environmental legislation goes wrong

How good environmental legislation goes wrong

The California Environmental Quality Act is a valuable protector of this state's resources. It guides planning by forcing agencies to consider the environmental implications of proposed projects. CEQA is also a woefully blunt instrument that thwarts economic growth and, perversely, can actually harm the environment. That's exactly what's happening with a proposed switching yard at the Port of Los Angeles.

The railway company BNSF has spent more than a decade working with the port to design a yard close to the port where trucks could deposit containers from ships onto the rail network. The new yard, called the Southern California International Gateway, would mean reduced traffic...