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Colorado requires greenhouse gas assessments on all transportation projects

DENVER (KDVR) – Beginning in 2022, all transportation projects around Colorado will have to comply with the new greenhouse gas rule.

This follows a 10-1 vote by the Colorado Transportation Commission that approved the new rule. The new rule means that no upcoming projects for roads around the state can be approved without first considering its impact on the climate.

Colorado is the first state in the country to approve a standard rule on greenhouse gas pollution for road projects, the Colorado Department of Transportation said.

“Transport is the number one source of greenhouse gas pollution. The urgency of addressing climate action is real and inaction is not an option when we are faced with the reality of extreme events such as devastating floods, increasingly droughts, and more. became frequent and hazardous air to breathe became the norm,” said CDOT CEO Shoshana Lew, in part, in a statement.

The state will also receive millions of federal funds from the recently passed infrastructure bill. US Representative Joe Neguse, D-Boulder, said Colorado will receive $700 million to improve its road and highway systems.

A CDOT spokesman told FOX31 that the latest investment from Washington would be only 20-25% higher than what the state typically receives from the federal government.

The Denver Streets Partnership is lobbying the state to fund projects that care about the climate and can move people who can’t drive around.

“We also need to plan for our communities in a way that makes commuting easier for people, not just cars,” said Molly McKinley, of the Denver Streets Partnership.

“What we’re really trying to do is stop the bad stuff, like widening the highways, and do a lot of the good stuff, like increase transit,” says McKinley.

How to make Colorado’s transportation more climate-conscious?

McKinley and the Denver Streets Partnership say there are three things Colorado can do to successfully comply with the new rule and build better transportation infrastructure.

The first is to use federal dollars for public transit.

“If we are to meet the needs of a developing country, increase access to opportunity for low-income Coloradoans, and reduce our impact on the climate, then we must finance,” McKinley said. support for public transport.

The next step will be to repair old roads instead of building new ones.

“We need to make sure that our existing infrastructure is safe for everyone, no matter what mode of transport they choose,” McKinley said. “It seems irresponsible to spend money on new infrastructure while the bridges are still in problematic repair.”

Finally, take advantage of additional funding from Washington along with the new greenhouse gas rule.

“We think leaders should look at opportunities at the state level, like providing consistent operating funding to transit agencies,” McKinley said.

https://kdvr.com/news/local/colorado-to-require-greenhouse-gas-assessments-on-all-transportation-projects/ Colorado requires greenhouse gas assessments on all transportation projects

Emma Bowman

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