Taking it to the Streets: the East Coast’s Newest Climate Initiative

It may be time to learn a new acronym.  The 10 RGGI states, plus Pennsylvania and Washington DC have banded together to create the Transportation and Climate Initiative (TCI) — a group that has pledged to create a plan to address the estimated 30% of greenhouse gas emissions on the eastern seaboard caused by the transportation sector. 

In a Declaration of Intent released Wednesday, the leaders of the environmental, transportation and energy agencies of Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington DC, pledged to develop and implement a three-year work plan that outlines how the region can cut greenhouse gases from vehicles and improve efficiency of regional transportation systems.   The TCI builds on RGGI (which does not itself regulate fuels or transportation, but began the states’ collaborative efforts on the issue of greenhouse gas emissions) and the 11-states’ low carbon fuel memorandum of understanding signed in December.

ClimateWire reports that states hope to leverage their collaboration into federal grants from the EPA, Department of Transportation and other agencies for pilot projects.  Long-term goals such as increasing the density of commercial and residential housing hubs and creating mixed-use development that supports alternatives to driving are also noted in the announcement.  As with RGGI, states will collaborate on the master plan, then work to individually implement the changes through legislation and regulations. 

 

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