The stretch of I5 interstate highway running through the Eliot Neighborhood was measured by ODOT using a rubber strip sensor to be among the busiest truck routes in Oregon. This is due to in-city short-haul trucks that pace back and forth through Eliot making Portland freight deliveries. Our research into ODOT and DMV data found 75% of these in-city short-haul trucks are unfiltered. Unfiltered trucks are illegal to manufacture and are banned from all of California because they produce ten times as much diesel particulate as a filtered truck.
Portlanders cherish easy access to outdoor activities, clean air, and locally roasted coffee. While our city’s air quality has generally improved over the last 30 years, Portland, and especially the Eliot neighborhood, currently has some of the worst air pollution in the nation.
Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods (NECN) has put together an Air Toxics Report. Please follow the link below for the North/Northeast Portland’s Air Pollution Report. You will find a map and narrative with facts about industrial facilities and diesel truck pollution. Learn what we can do to improve air quality!
Air quality issues hit home in Eliot through the news in early February, through a shocking revelation that Uroboros Glass, located on Kirby Ave, was burning cadmium and had been for years to make art glass in Eliot. The irony of the matter was that it was moss in the nearby trees that had helped Forest Service researchers find the Uroboros site’s pollution, not the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ). That agency soon revealed that cadmium burning, now indicated in two glass factories including Bullseye in SE, have a monthly average of 49 times the state’s established air safety benchmark level for cadmium and 159 times the safe level for arsenic. Cadmium and arsenic are both known carcinogens connected to serious health effects.
Portland’s air pollution problem was brought to our attention in January 2016, when the Portland Mercury broke a story, exposing elevated cadmium and arsenic in several areas of our city. Days later, Oregon’s Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ), the regulatory body responsible for air safety, announced their data indicated a monthly average of 49 times the state’s established air-safety benchmark level for cadmium and 159 times the benchmark for the arsenic. Cadmium and arsenic are both known carcinogens, connected with serious health effects, like cancer, respiratory problems, and organ damage.