House Transportation Examines Climate Change and Infrastructure

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On Tuesday, the U.S. House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure examined the role the transportation sector plays in climate change, which included the dual track approach of mitigation and resiliency. Committee Members heard from individuals in the public and private sectors on ways to reduce carbon emissions and building resilient infrastructure. At this hearing, “Examining How Federal Infrastructure Policy Could Help Mitigate and Adapt to Climate Change,” witnesses provided testimony on the effects of infrastructure policy on climate and the environment. The following people testified:

  • Daniel Sperling, Board Member of the California Air Resources Board
  • Vicki Arroyo, Executive Director of the Georgetown Climate Center
  • Professor Thomas P. Lyon, Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan
  • Ben Prochazka, Vice President of Electrification Coalition
  • Kevin DeGood, Director of Infrastructure Policy at the Center for American Progress
  • James M. Proctor II, Senior Vice President and General Counsel at McWane Inc.
  • Whitley Saumweber, Director of the Stephenson Ocean Security Project at the Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Lynn Scarlett, Vice President of Policy and Government Affairs at The Nature Conservancy
  • Nancy Young, Vice President of Environmental Affairs at the Airlines for America

Committee Vice Chair Salud Carbajal (D-CA24), acting on behalf of Chairman Peter DeFazio (D-OR4), began the hearing by stating, “Today we bring the full committee together for our second hearing of the year, to examine how Federal infrastructure policy could help mitigate and adapt to climate change. The transportation sector is now the largest contributor to global warming in the U.S. Within the transportation sector, passenger and freight vehicles contribute 83 percent of global warming emissions. I intend to respond appropriately to this challenge as we move legislation and direct investment to transportation activities this Congress.”

Much of the buzz on Capitol Hill has been infrastructure related, which has spurred hearings, discussions, and meetings as a part of a legislative push aimed at developing and passing robust and broad infrastructure legislation. The House Transportation Committee continued the conversation around this legislative push on an often overlooked component of infrastructure investment. ASCE has long recognized the impact our environment and climate change plays within our infrastructure system. As these impacts continue to put strain on our infrastructure system, ASCE will remain active in supporting these critical issues.

ASCE’s government relations team is actively engaged as this legislative push continues on Capitol Hill. We urge you reach out to your Members of Congress and tell them to put forward a long-term plan to improve our infrastructure systems.

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