New Transportation Website Targets Greenhouse Gases

July 27, 2009

Offers REAL Transportation Solutions to GHG Emissions

WASHINGTON, July 27 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — A new website is being launched by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials to highlight strategies to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from transportation. The website, Real Transportation Solutions for Green House Gas Emissions, includes best practices, state examples, research findings, and links to other climate change information sites.

“State departments of transportation are committed to doing our share to reach a goal of reducing greenhouse gases in the United States 80 percent by 2050, compared to 2005 levels,” said AASHTO Executive Director John Horsley.

“When you consider that autos and light-duty trucks contribute 16.5 percent of the greenhouse gases in the United States, it’s obvious to us that transportation must play a significant role in the solution,” said Horsley. “The key is to invest in realistic and livable solutions that can help us meet our GHG reduction goals.”

AASHTO’s new website provides information on four basic strategies:

  • Smarter Driving: Reducing the annual growth in driving;
  • Better Fuels: Shifting to fuels that produce low or zero carbon dioxide;
  • Better Cars: Increasing vehicle fuel efficiency; and
  • Optimizing the System: Improving the efficiency and operation of the transportation system.

Accomplishing these goals will require holding growth in miles driven in the United States to one percent annually and initiating attainable land use strategies, which include increasing transit usage, car and van pooling, telecommuting, bicycling, and walking.

Further GHG reductions will be achieved through effective management of available road capacity and by reducing congestion delays through the use of intelligent transportation systems. These high tech tools will maximize efficiency by giving motorists’ real time travel information about bottlenecks, traffic mishaps and road hazards.

Major reductions in greenhouse gas emissions will depend to a large extent on cleaner cars and cleaner fuels. Technological advances have been responsible for dramatic reductions in air pollution and will be the predominant answer to reducing transportation GHG.

The website also highlights the wide spectrum of research that is under way or planned to further evaluate the effectiveness of greenhouse gas emission reduction strategies.

“This is a critical issue as the nation implements efforts to reduce emissions,” said Horsley. “Both the House Climate Change Bill and the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Surface Transportation authorization bill require that as a part of the transportation planning process, States and their metropolitan planning organizations must establish greenhouse gas emission reduction targets and strategies to meet those targets.”

“This is a 40 year mission, but every day counts,” said John Horsley. “The stakes are too high to get this wrong and that’s why we’re hoping policy makers, journalists and the general public will turn to this website for realistic solutions that will help us reach our goal.”

In addition to the website, AASHTO has also issued a companion brochure, titled Real Transportation Solutions to Greenhouse Gas Emissions. To download the report and to access the website go to http://www.transportation1.org/RealSolutions

The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) is the “Voice of Transportation” representing State Departments of Transportation in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. AASHTO is a nonprofit, nonpartisan association serving as a catalyst for excellence in transportation.

SOURCE American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials

Source: newswire

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