Help transportation pull its weight with climate: Tell the Senate to support CLEAN-TEAJuly 21, 2009
By Stephen Lee Davis
The U.S. transportation sector produces one-third of our carbon emissions, yet the House-passed climate bill would direct just one percent of revenues to cleaner transportation options that can help us cut transportation emissions. The Senate has a chance to make a serious investment in greener transportation – up to 10% of funding in the climate bill.
A proposal in the Senate called CLEAN-TEA would direct funding to clean transportation investments — like public transportation and passenger rail, affordable neighborhoods around transit stops, and neighborhood improvements that increase safety for cyclists and pedestrians.
The Environment and Public Works Committee, under the leadership of Sen. Boxer, will ultimately decide whether or not to include CLEAN-TEA (S.575) in the Senate climate bill they’re drafting right now. There are currently six co-sponsors out of 19 committee members. If we can get a majority (10) of the committee to sponsor this legislation, we’ll be sending a powerful signal to the Chairman that it should be included. Help us send a strong message to Chairman Boxer that more funding for clean transportation options have to be part of the Senate climate bill by getting more co-sponsors for CLEAN-TEA.
We need as many Senate sponsors as possible for this important bill, but sponsors from the EPW committee in particular. So especially if you live in an EPW member’s state (below), please call the Congressional Switchboard at 202-224-3121, ask to be connected to your Senator’s office and leave a message with a staffer.
Tell them that “the U.S. transportation sector accounts for one third of our greenhouse gas emissions, yet current climate legislation directs only one percent of funding to cleaner transportation options. Senator ____ can help change that by co-sponsoring S. 575, or CLEAN-TEA, as its called. By including CLEAN-TEA in climate legislation you will not only ensure greater investment in low carbon transportation options, but will also help put us on the path to energy independence, reduce transportation costs for Americans, and create jobs to build out clean, green transportation infrastructure. ”
|EPW Senators not yet sponsoring Clean-TEA
|California:||Chairman Barbara Boxer|
|Idaho:||Sen. Mike Crapo||Ohio:||Sen. George V. Voinovich|
|Louisiana:||Sen. David Vitter||Oklahoma:||Sen. James M. Inhofe|
|Minnesota:||Sen. Amy Klobuchar||Rhode Island:||Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse|
|Missouri:||Sen. Christopher S. Bond||Tennessee:||Sen. Lamar Alexander|
|Montana:||Sen. Max Baucus||Vermont:||Sen. Bernie Sanders|
|New Mexico:||Sen. Tom Udall||Wyoming:||Sen. John Barrasso|
The 6 CLEAN-TEA sponsors would love to hear your support. If you live in any of these states below, call the Congressional Switchboard at 202-224-3121, ask to be connected to your Senator’s office below, and tell the staffer that answers that you support their choice to sponsor CLEAN-TEA. Tell them that you agree it’s imperative that we direct climate revenues to help us clean up transportation — the sector responsible for 30% of our emissions, and that this bill is a step in the right direction. Tell them you appreciate your leadership on the issue and you’re done.
Call and thank these sponsors:
- Delaware: Sen. Thomas Carper
- Pennsylvania: Sen. Arlen Specter
- Maryland: Sen. Ben Cardin
- New Jersey: Sen. Frank Lautenberg
- New York: Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand
- Oregon: Sen. Jeff Merkley
Did you make a phone call? Spread the word on Twitter. If you’ve got any questions, ask away in the comments.
UPDATED: Some good quotes from sponsoring Sens. Cardin and Carper in Streetsblog Capitol Hill: “She fully understands the fact that we can’t get from here to there [on emissions] without addressing transportation,” Carper told Streetsblog Capitol Hill. …”I think 10 percent’s right,” Cardin told Streetsblog Capitol Hill.