December 9, 2019
  • 2:34 pm Committee Leadership Comes into Focus for 116th Congress
  • 2:22 pm Interstate System Report Calls for More Funding, Tolling, VMT Fees, and Cybersecurity
  • 2:15 pm In Memoriam: President George H. W. Bush, ISTEA, and Transportation
  • 1:56 pm Growth Projected for Transportation Projects, but Costs a Challenge
  • 1:35 pm FAA Reshuffles Executives, Plans Drone Identification Rulemaking in Spring 2019
  • 1:28 pm Predictive Technology Helps Reduce Crashes on I-15 Corridor in Las Vegas
  • 1:14 pm Video Report: MoDOT Produces Multi-Lingual Safety Message
  • 1:11 pm PennDOT Nears Completion of Rapid Bridge Replacement Project
  • 1:08 pm Infrastructure Grants Awarded to “Smaller” South Dakota Communities
  • 1:00 pm AASHTO Highlights Safety, Formula Funding at Freight System Hearing
  • 12:53 pm FCC’s 5.9 GHz Reallocation Plan Debated at House Hearing
  • 12:46 pm Lack of Reauthorization Could Imperil Future Transportation Infrastructure Spending
  • 12:42 pm USDOT Releases ‘Rule for Rules,’ Codifying Reforms
  • 12:39 pm FTA Awards $423M in Transit Infrastructure Grants

Governor Tom Wolf (D) of Pennsylvania (seen above) kick-started two transportation-related initiatives on April 29. First, the state joined the U.S. Climate Alliance and committed to several greenhouse gas emission strategies, including spurring broader adoption of electric vehicles. Second, the governor signed off on more than $20 million in funding 27 freight rail improvement projects statewide.

[Above photo via the Pennsylvania Governor’s Office.]

“States like Pennsylvania must take action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and protect our communities, economies, infrastructures, and environments from the risks of a warming climate,” Gov. Wolf said in a statement. “Keeping goods and services moving across Pennsylvania’s more than 5,000 miles of freight track is vital to the state’s economy. [So] these investments in our rail infrastructure will continue to support business development and create new jobs throughout the state.”

Joining the Climate Alliance will align the Pennsylvania Climate Action Plan 2018 with similar efforts being undertaken by 24 other states, the governor’s office noted, and as the state is a “major transportation hub,” it can take steps to increase reliance on low-carbon transportation solutions while reducing emissions from its transportation fleet – part of the greenhouse gas reduction strategy mapped out in an executive order issued by Gov. Wolf back in January.

That order mandates that all state agencies collectively reduce overall energy consumption by 3 percent per year and 21 percent by 2025 from 2017 levels. It also commits to replacing 25 percent of the state passenger car fleet with battery electric and plug-in electric hybrid cars by 2025, evaluate opportunities for the reduction of vehicle miles traveled and incorporate “new transportation technology” where appropriate to reduce emissions.

That’s a further boost to joint efforts by Pennsylvania Department of Transportation and the Department of Environmental to broaden the deployment of electric vehicles, which they have been doing via the Drive Electric Pennsylvania Coalition since mid-2018.

Meanwhile, the more than $20 million in funding for 27 freight rail investments are aimed at “ensuring economic competitiveness, improving safety, and strengthening our multimodal transportation system,” noted Transportation Secretary Leslie Richards in a statement. “Advancing rail freight projects will preserve, improve, and create additional services for the industries and customers.”

“Transportation is critical to connecting communities and economies, and we are an important partner in bringing progress across the state,” added Gov. Wolf. “A government that works is one that uses every available resource for maximum impact.”

editor@aashto.org

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