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Transportation Alternatives

Issue Summary
Other Federal Agencies
Organizations/Non-Government Programs

Issue Summary

The nation's transit system links regions and connects cities, counties, and states.  Local governments play a major role in providing and managing the nation's transit services.  However, local government transit management is about more than just moving people and products.  City and county managers are responsible for ensuring the health, safety and welfare of their constituents, that includes pursuing better outcomes in public health, affordable housing, job access, energy efficiency and sustainable quality of life in their communities. Local governments recognize that sound transit investments and management can help them achieve these outcomes.  Their unique position allows them to see the bigger picture; not only in the long-term effects of a specific program, but also in how the multitude of local government programs can become intricately linked together and influence each other.  Local officials need resources and tools to safeguard their transit systems and to build partnerships among transportation, public safety, and other professionals regionally to improve transit services and the quality of life. A balanced, well-designed transportation system that allows people to get around by car, transit, bicycle, and walking is a key element of a livable community (Local Government Commission).

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EPA Guide to Sustainable Transportation Performance Measures: The guide describes opportunities for transportation agencies to incorporate environmental, economic, and social sustainability into decision-making through the use of performance measures. Performance measures allow decision-makers to quickly observe the effects of a proposed transportation plan or project, or to monitor trends in transportation system performance over time. The guide describes 12 performance measures that can readily be used in transportation decision-making, and for each, it presents possible metrics, summarizes analytical methods and data sources, and illustrates its use by one or more transportation agencies.

State and Local Transportation Resources: In communities throughout the country, state and local leaders are seeking to balance their air quality, climate, and transportation goals. This Web site provides useful information, tools, and links to resources that identify emission reduction strategies, national policies, regulations, incentive-based programs, funding sources, calculators, and other types of assistance to help states and local areas achieve their air quality and transportation objectives.

EPA's Office of Transportation and Air Quality (OTAQ) protects public health and the environment by regulating air pollution from motor vehicles, engines, and the fuels used to operate them, and by encouraging travel choices that minimize emissions. These "mobile sources" include cars and light trucks, heavy trucks and buses, nonroad recreational vehicles (such as dirt bikes and snowmobiles), farm and construction machines, lawn and garden equipment, marine engines, aircraft, and locomotives.

Overview:  Pollutants and Programs: Information on how much air pollution, air toxics, and greenhouse gases are emitted by mobile sources, the programs OTAQ has undertaken to control these emissions, and the impact of those programs on air quality and climate change.

Consumer Information: Learn what you can do to help reduce air pollution. Use the Green Vehicle Guide to find the cleanest, most fuel-efficient vehicle that meets your needs. And, the Fuel Economy Guide for useful gas mileage tips.

On-Road Vehicles & Engines: Information about highway vehicles (cars and light trucks, heavy trucks, buses, engines and motorcycles) fuel economy, emission standards and regulations, emission recall programs, new vehicle certification and in-use vehicle compliance, inspection and maintenance programs, diesel retrofit programs, evaluating the benefits of inventions designed to reduce emissions, and importing vehicles and engines to the United States.  

Nonroad Engines, Equipment, and Vehicles:  Information about aircraftdiesel boats and shipsgasoline boats and personal watercraftnonroad diesel equipmentforklifts, generators and compressors (gasoline and propane), lawn and garden (small gasoline equipment), locomotives, and snowmobiles, dirt bikes, and ATVs: emission standards and regulations, certification and compliance, and diesel retrofit programs.

Fuels and Fuel Additives:  Information on dieselgasolinerenewable fuels, and alternative fuels for mobile sources, fuel-quality control programs, requirements for registration and health effects testing of new fuels or fuel additives, and reporting forms.

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Other Federal Departments and Agencies

Partnerships:  Information about EPA's partnerships to reduce air pollution associated with transportation and other mobile sources. These programs include National Clean Diesel Campaign (NCDC) | SmartWay | Clean School Bus USA.

Clean Cities Coalition Network Technical Assistance. This resource, run by the Department of Energy, assists with education on alternative fuels, fuel economy improvements, and emerging transportation technologies.


State and Local Transportation Resources:  Information on the ties between land use, transportation planning, and air quality. Find information on transportation and conformity, policy and guidance, laws and regulations, and calculators and modeling tools.

Where You Live Each EPA Regional Office is responsible for the execution of the Agency's programs within its states. This link provides a map and listing of Regional Offices to access to your region's energy related programs and websites.

Climate Change State Resource Locator. Use this tool to locate state climate change resources. You will find links to state climate change main pages, state action plans, climate policies and more.

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Organizations/Non-Government Programs

Alternative and Renewable Fuel & Vehicle Technology Program
Provides a range of information on alternative fuels related to California's alternative transportation fuels program, in operation since 1975.

Drive Clean 
A California Air Resources Board Web site that showcases the cleanest vehicles on the market: hybrids, clean gasoline-powered vehicles, alternative-fuel cars, and electric vehicles.

Governors' Ethanol Coalition
A coalition of Governors working to promote ethanol as part of the nation's transportation fuels market.

Alternative Fuel Vehicle Directory 
A resource that lists numerous Web sites related to alternative fuels and alternative-fueled vehicles.

American Coalition for Ethanol
A national organization representing ethanol producers, farmers, commodity organizations, suppliers of goods and services to the industry, rural electric cooperatives, and others supportive of the increased production and use of ethanol.

National Biodiesel Board
A national trade association representing the biodiesel industry as the coordinating body for research and development in the United States.

National Corn Growers Association
A national organization working with farmers, industry, and government to build the ethanol industry.

Natural Gas Vehicle Coalition
A national organization dedicated to the development of a growing, sustainable, and profitable market for vehicles powered by natural gas or hydrogen.

National Propane Gas Association
The national trade association representing the United States propane industry.

Propane Education and Research Council
A Council established to advance propane's future as a clean, safe, and superior performing alternative transportation fuel.

Renewable Fuels Association
The national trade association for the United States ethanol industry.


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