Briefing Continues in ARB case

TRANSDEF filed its Opening Brief in its challenge to ARB’s inclusion of HSR in its 2014 Scoping Plan. It’s been a long hard slog since we filed the case back in 2014, but things will move more quickly now. See this page for a copy of the brief, for ARB’s Opposition Brief, and for a description of the case’s complicated history over the past two years. Here’s the Brief’s Conclusion: TRANSDEF does not oppose, and indeed strongly supports, almost all of the Updated Scoping Plan; but TRANSDEF opposes inserting a measure into the Scoping Plan that does not and cannot meet the…

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TRANSDEF Opposes CCTA Sales Tax Measure X

TRANSDEF Opposes CCTA Sales Tax Measure X 09/04/16 Filed in: Transportation Planning | Climate Change The TRANSDEF Board has voted to formally oppose Contra Costa Transportation Authority’s (CCTA’s) transportation sales tax measure. Our ballot arguments were selected to be the Oppose position in the Voter Guide. Our campaign website  was posted today. Tags: Contra Costa, Highway Widening, Tax, Congestion

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TRANSDEF Opposes VTA Sales Tax Measure B

TRANSDEF Opposes VTA Sales Tax Measure B 09/04/16 Filed in: Climate Change | Transportation Planning The TRANSDEF Board has voted to formally oppose the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority’s (VTA’s) transportation sales tax Measure. We have No Confidence in VTA. Check out the websites of our allies Sierra Club and BayRail Alliance! Measure B would double VTA’s sales tax. This is intolerable, when the Measure fails in three distinct policy areas: BART to San Jose and Santa Clara is a horribly wasteful and ineffective response to the commuting challenges of Santa Clara County residents. The continued funding of highways is ultimately futile, as congestion will merely continue to get worse. See this study…

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TRANSDEF Seeks RTP Alternatives

TRANSDEF Seeks RTP Alternatives 06/15/16 Filed in: Transportation Planning | Climate Change TRANSDEF today filed its scoping comments for the 2017 Regional Transportation Plan. The letter asks MTC to study a regional plan alternative in which there is no money for highway widenings or BART extensions. Instead, available funding would be spent on cost-effective transit projects and service. The intent is to maximize the reduction of GHGs by shifting travel away from solo driving. The alternative proposes a test of the long-running MTC assertion that “transportation investments don’t move the needle” by which they mean that the investments don’t make a difference with GHG emissions or Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT). TRANSDEF has always agreed that MTC’s…

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ARB Not In Touch With Transportation

ARB Not In Touch With Transporation 12/09/15 Filed in: Climate Change | Transportation Planning A collection of TRANSDEF’s comments to the Air Resources Board (ARB) was recently posted: Testimony to ARB on Regional GHG Emissions Reduction Targets: “These targets will result in increased emissions in this sector, due to population growth. This is going in the wrong direction, and would send the wrong signal to the rest of the world about ARB’s view of the need for urgent reductions in GHG emissions.” ARB’s 2013 Scoping Plan Update: “Staff recognizes the need for “Fundamental transformation of transportation system needed to meet…

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Marin Clings to Status Quo

Marin Clings to Status Quo 10/12/15 Filed in: Transportation Planning | Climate Change As the Transportation Authority of Marin was determining what projects to submit to the 2017 Regional Transportation Plan, TRANSDEF’s President testified, “Highway performance is at near-crisis levels. Mobility is severely impaired. Yet you are being offered more of the same.” See that testimony and the rest of the Marin page. TAM didn’t discuss whether there was a problem, and adopted staff’s status quo proposal. Tags: RTP, Marin, Congestion

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Caltrans Leaps into the Present

Caltrans Leaps into the Present 04/07/15 Filed in: Transportation Planning | Climate Change Caltrans has released its draft California Transportation Plan, or CTP 2040. The draft plan is a dramatic change from decades of status quo thinking. The plan is specifically designed to answer a question posed by the Legislature in 2009’s SB 391: What is needed for California to reduce emissions from motor vehicles to meet the AB 32 and Executive Order GHG emissions reduction targets. TRANSDEF wrote a series of letters praising the Plan and suggesting improvements. They include overview comments, detailed comments, and their attachments. Streetsblog wrote…

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Cap and Trade Guidelines for Transit

Cap and Trade Guidelines for Transit 02/06/15 Filed in: Climate Change | Transportation Planning TRANSDEF filed comments on January 30, 2014 on the draft Guidelines for the State Transportation Agency’s distribution of cap and trade funds to transit and intercity rail. The program, called the Transit and Intercity Rail Capital Program, will receive an ongoing 10% of cap and trade  auction revenues. The final Guidelines were adopted today, and differed from the draft in the areas highlighted in yellow. None of the changes responded to our comments. Our comments addressed the ongoing problem with large transportation projects: they promise too much and deliver too little, at a vastly higher price than initially promised. We wrote up…

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It’s Time to Get Serious, ARB

It’s Time to Get Serious, ARB 10/19/14 Filed in: Climate Change TRANSDEF submitted comments to the Air Resources Board today on the need for an update to the regional GHG emissions reduction targets that were assigned by ARB back in 2010. These targets tell regional boards like MTC how much they must reduce their GHG emissions. Currently, GHG emissions continue to grow, as the regions continue to support solo driving. The letter states that the current targets aren’t working, and that tougher ones are needed to send a message to transportation agencies that they must play an active role in protecting the climate. The ARB staff report is here. These comments are…

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Contra Costa Stuck in the Past

Contra Costa Stuck in the Past 10/15/14 Filed in: Transportation Planning | Climate Change Contra Costa County’s Transportation Authority has released a draft 2014 Countywide Comprehensive Transportation Plan. It is a classic suburban plan that ignores the fundamental challenges posed by climate change and congestion. TRANSDEF submitted comments that attempt to identify a different, more realistic pathway. We believe these comments are widely applicable to suburbia. The EIR for this Plan was a bizarre concoction. TRANSDEF’s comments identified it as “the most legally inadequate CEQA document TRANSDEF has ever seen.” Tags: CEQA, Contra Costa

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