T4America Blog

News, press releases and other updates

Posts Tagged "climate change"

Electric vehicles aren’t good for equity, but we should try

An electric Smart car charges at a curbside charging station in DC

Electric vehicles, while vital for reducing emissions and meeting our long-term emissions reduction goals, are not a good strategy for improving existing inequities in transportation. But there are specific things we can and should do to make this transition more equitable than it otherwise would be.

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Electric vehicles are good for emissions, bad for advancing equity

A Black man walks to a bus stop along a multi-lane highway

Climate funders, electric vehicle industry groups, and environmentalists are rightly confronting the question of how to address equity in the electric vehicle space. They may not like the answer.

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Want to save the climate? Start by funding transit operations

The current trend of more driving will make it harder for us to reach our emissions goals. Making public transit a more convenient and reliable option so people can access the things they need while taking shorter or fewer car trips is one way to reverse the trend of more driving.

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More highways, more driving, more emissions: Explaining “induced demand”

Even if we hit the most ambitious targets for changing our cars and trucks over to electric vehicles, we will fail to meaningfully reduce emissions from transportation without confronting this simple fact: new roads always produce new driving. This costly feedback loop referred to as “induced demand” is the invisible force short-circuiting the neverending attempts to eliminate congestion by building or expanding roads.

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WATCH NOW: Going #BeyondEVs in three webinars, including one with Sec. Anthony Foxx

Electrifying vehicles is critical to reducing transportation emissions, but they can’t get the job done on their own—Americans need the freedom to drive less. In honor of Earth Day next Tuesday, we’re hosting three webinars diving into this issue, including one with former USDOT Secretary Anthony Foxx and Rep. Nikema Williams (GA-5).

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Why Transportation for America joined an electric vehicle coalition

If you’ve been following Transportation for America for a while, you know that electric vehicles on their own aren’t enough to reduce emissions from the transportation sector—the largest source of U.S. emissions. That’s why we joined CHARGE, a new coalition of cross-industry stakeholders advocating for a holistic approach to electrifying the U.S. transportation network.

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Why the INVEST Act is good for climate and business

We can have it all: a federal transportation program that reduces carbon emissions while boosting our economy. The House of Representatives led the way last summer with the INVEST Act, a bill that starts the work of connecting federal funding to the transportation outcomes Americans—including our businesses—need. Here’s how.

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Answers to your questions about Driving Down Emissions

17 Nov 2020 | Posted by | 2 Comments | , ,

We recently hosted a webinar to discuss our new report, Driving Down Emissions. We received many more great questions during the webinar than we had time to address, so we are answering some of the big ones here.

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Driving Down Emissions in Minnesota

State and local policymakers have an important role to play in making it possible for people to drive less, which is essential for lowering transportation emissions. With our partners at Move Minnesota we produced a new case study companion to Driving Down Emissions looking at how Minnesota has seen some success reducing transportation emissions, why that progress won’t be sufficient, and how to stop leaving valuable strategies to create more livable and equitable communities on the table.

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We’ll never address climate change without making it possible for people to drive less

With transportation accounting for the largest share of carbon emissions in the U.S., we’ll never achieve ambitious climate targets or create more livable and equitable communities if we don’t find ways to allow people to get around outside of a car—or provide more housing in places where that’s already an option. Our new report shows how we can reach those targets while building a more just and equitable society.

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Senate Democrats recommend less driving—as Senate committee approves billions for new roads

15 Sep 2020 | Posted by | 1 Comment | , , ,

The Senate Democrats’ Special Committee on the Climate Crisis recently released a report recommending key federal actions in each sector to avert the impacts of climate change, incorporating a number of Transportation for America’s recommendations. In fact, the very first recommendation for the transportation sector is to enable Americans to choose walking, biking, or public transportation over driving.

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Webinar recap: How the Senate’s transportation proposal would make climate change worse

Transportation is the largest source of U.S. carbon emissions, and most of it comes from driving. But a long-term transportation bill passed by a Senate committee last summer would only make this problem worse. Last week, along with Third Way, we discussed the role federal transportation policy plays in making climate change worse—and what a better transportation bill looks like. 

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Why the Senate’s transportation bill is terrible for climate

Last summer, the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee passed a long-term transportation bill that was praised for its climate title, marking the first time the word “climate” was included in a bipartisan transportation bill. But while this climate title was worth celebrating, the bill overall would actually result in more emissions, not less. Here’s how, and why we need a different approach.

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Biden/Sanders Unity Task Force report falls short on climate

Last week, Joe Biden’s presidential campaign jointly released policy recommendations across a range of issues in partnership with Bernie Sanders supporters through a Unity Task Force. Climate change takes a prominent role in the 110-page report, but the proposal fails to call for the comprehensive changes needed to address transportation emissions. Here’s how the Unity Task Force recommendations fall short, particularly in comparison to the House’s new climate blueprint and the INVEST Act. 

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House transportation bill goes big on climate

House transportation leaders introduced legislation to update our national transportation program to address climate, equity, safety and public health. Climate advocates and climate leaders on the Hill should recognize the strides taken with this proposal from Congress and fight to protect those changes in the bill.

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What would a Green New Deal for transportation look like?

Current federal transportation policy is diametrically opposed to climate action. The Green New Deal framework released a year ago mostly left that unchanged. But a new report T4America contributed to fills in those gaps and gives transportation policy the same visionary makeover to show what we could achieve if our transportation and climate goals were aligned.

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Rose Lanes get love from Portland City Council

The Portland City Council is moving forward with a plan to improve transit service through a series of targeted improvements to some of the city’s most delayed bus and streetcar corridors. Known as the Rose Lane Project, it’s designed to advance equity, reduce carbon emissions, and increase transit ridership with quick-build projects. It also offers lessons to other cities struggling with sluggish transit systems mired in a sea of cars.

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Step 1: Electric vehicle chargers. Step 2: Real structural reform.

Last week, Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY-14) and Andy Levin (MI-9) released the “Electric Vehicle Freedom Act,” a bill that would aim to “establish a nationwide electric vehicle charging network within five years.” The creativity behind this bill is exactly what Congress needs—we just need to focus on more than EVs.

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House environment coalition demands real transportation policy reform to tackle climate change

Last week, leaders of the House Sustainable Energy and Environment Coalition (SEEC) urged Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman Peter DeFazio and Ranking Member Sam Graves to use surface transportation reauthorization as an opportunity to take serious action on climate change.

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House bill sets new standard for GREEN Streets

Last week, Rep. Jared Huffman (CA-02) introduced a bill that would measure and reduce greenhouse gas emissions and vehicle miles traveled on our roadways. This would be transformative.

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