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).
Transportation is the largest source of U.S. emissions—and they’re going up. Yet electric vehicles (EVs) are not enough on their own to reduce these emissions due to the slow rate of fleet turnover and the increasing rate of vehicle miles traveled (VMT). Americans are driving more and more every day, and policy can’t keep up.
But Americans aren’t driving more by choice. Our transportation investment decisions make driving many people’s only option, forcing people to drive everywhere by prioritizing projects that make it easier to drive fast. This cuts off millions of Americans who can’t afford or operate a vehicle from reaching jobs, schools, and other essential services.
To truly reduce transportation emissions and make transportation accessible for everyone—no matter who you are or where you live—we need to give Americans more options than just driving. We need to go #BeyondEVs.
Join us on Tuesday, April 20th; Wednesday, April 21st; and Thursday, April 22nd for three webinars that break down the need to go #BeyondEVs. And please share!
Tuesday, 1:00 pm ET: Undoing the Damage of Urban Freeways
This two-part, joint panel event with Third Way examines the lasting impact of urban freeways and how our next infrastructure investments must be different.
Transportation investments shape our communities — not always for the better. For decades, transportation planners invested in urban freeways that destroyed many communities of color. Recently, the Department of Transportation halted a planned expansion of I-45 in Houston, a project that would have displaced not only families, homes, and businesses but historic Black and brown communities.
Changing the way we invest in transportation is part of how we’ll make the U.S. more equitable. The new American Jobs Plan presents a once-in-a-century opportunity to do that — if we do it right.
Check out our superstar lineup of speakers:
- Former US Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx, Lyft’s Chief Policy Officer
- Josh Freed, Senior Vice President for the Climate and Energy Program, Third Way
- Representative Nikema Williams (D-GA)
- Mayor Ben Walsh, Syracuse, New York
- Former Mayor John Norquist, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
- Beth Osborne, Director, Transportation for America
- Tanya Snyder, Reporter, POLITICO
- Molly Cook, Stop TxDOT I-45, Houston
- Keith Baker, Executive Director of Reconnect Rondo, St. Paul
- Amy Stelly, Claiborne Avenue Alliance, New Orleans
Wednesday, 3:00 pm ET: Driving Down Emissions: Why reducing how much we drive is critical for our climate
The heart of our transportation climate strategy needs to hinge on making it easier, safer, and more convenient to take shorter routine trips and meet daily needs without a car, whether those vehicles are electric or not. We’ll never achieve our ambitious climate targets in time—or create more livable and equitable communities—if we don’t.
This webinar will draw from Smart Growth America’s 2020 report, Driving Down Emissions, and highlight new research and state action to reduce emissions from the transportation sector. Speakers will discuss why it’s so critical to reduce the need to drive in the US, how policy changes can get us there, and what steps California and Minnesota, two leading states, are taking to make it happen.
Thursday, 1:00 pm ET: Transforming Transit: Fund transit at the same level as highways
Expanding public transportation is necessary to help give Americans more transportation options than just driving and building an equitable economy post-COVID-19.
This webinar will unpack hurdles to a transformational investment in public transit embedded in existing federal transportation policy—notably the “handshake deal” limiting public transit to only 20 percent of the transportation budget. Our speakers will break down the consequences of this policy—something we’ve expanded upon here—and help chart a path forward.
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