December 18, 2018

With Ambitious New Program, States Unite to Fight Climate Change by Cutting Transportation Emissions

Statement by Ken Kimmell, President, Union of Concerned Scientists

WASHINGTON (December 18, 2018)—Today, nine states in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic region, along with the District of Columbia, announced they will launch a new “cap and invest” system to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from cars, trucks and buses.  This proposal will help reduce the impact of climate change and build a cleaner, more reliable transportation system, according to the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS). 

Below is a statement by Ken Kimmell, President of UCS. 

This is one of the biggest steps that Northeast and mid-Atlantic states have taken to tackle climate change. It will remove a sizable chunk of carbon from the transportation sector—the biggest source of carbon emissions in the U.S. The region is showing the rest of the country how to build a clean transportation system.  

“If these nine states and D.C. were a country, they would comprise the world’s fifth-largest economy, just behind Germany. That’s why today’s action is so meaningful—it has the size and scale to make a real difference, and it provides an excellent example of collective, bi-partisan leadership.

“With the Trump administration denying climate science, rolling back public health safeguards, and undermining international climate action, today’s announcement couldn’t come at a better time—it shows the world that the United States is still in the fight, and Donald Trump does not speak for the country on this issue.  

“At the same time, these leaders have shown that they’re listening to their residents who need a modern transportation system—one that cuts unhealthy pollution and offers more reliable, affordable options for everyone. We look forward to working with these states and diverse stakeholders to make this proposal as fair and effective as possible.” 

A recent report from the Union of Concerned Scientists shows that investments in cleaner transportation could cut emissions, improve air quality and reduce consumer spending on gasoline by more than $1 trillion by 2050. Kimmell elaborates on the importance of this proposal in a new blog post. 

The Union of Concerned Scientists puts rigorous, independent science to work to solve our planet's most pressing problems. Joining with people across the country, we combine technical analysis and effective advocacy to create innovative, practical solutions for a healthy, safe, and sustainable future.