Title

REDUCING THE IMPACTS OF TRANSPORTATION ON GLOBAL WARMING: SUMMARY OF NEW YORK GREENHOUSE GAS TASK FORCE RECOMMENDATIONS

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

2003

Subject Area

planning - standards, land use - impacts, land use - smart growth, ridership - growth, mode - mass transit

Keywords

Transportation policy, Transit, State of New York, Smart growth, Recommendations, Public transit, New York (State), Mass transit, Local transit, High speed trains, Greenhouse gases, Global warming, Funding, Freight transportation, Financing, Emissions standards, Emissions reduction, Biomass fuels, Biogas, Biofuels

Abstract

Global climate change is fundamentally caused by fossil fuel combustion. The transportation sector generates more than one-third of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in New York and represents the fastest-growing source of GHG emissions in the state. A summary of the recommendations of the New York Greenhouse Gas Task Force for reducing GHG emissions from the transportation sector is provided. Using a bottom-up analytical approach, the Center for Clean Air Policy--with advice from the task force--determined that New York can reduce transportation-sector emissions by 1.64 million metric tons of carbon equivalent (MMTCE) in 2010 (total emissions 20.9% above 1990 levels) and by 5.23 MMTCE in 2020 (total emissions 16.5% above 1990 levels) by implementing the task force's recommendations. Achieving significant reductions in GHG emissions from transportation requires a comprehensive package of complementary measures, including shifting funding to more GHG-efficient alternatives such as transit and smart growth, adopting GHG emissions standards for light-duty vehicles (upon implementation in California), creating an indigenous biofuels program, and considering policy mechanisms to increase freight efficiency and high-speed rail options. To facilitate the implementation of these measures, the establishment of a state entity for reducing transportation-sector emissions is recommended with a goal of reducing transportation GHG emissions to 20% above 1990 levels by 2010, 10% above 1990 levels by 2020, and 1990 levels by 2030.