Carbon Reduction Program: Encouraging fewer cars (and carbon emissions)

The Carbon Reduction Program will fund projects like bike infrastructure, public transit, and port electrification.

An aerial shot of people walking on a crosswalk next to a bike lane

Funding will go toward projects aimed at reducing carbon emissions.

Photo by Omar Elsharawy via Pexels

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Did you know that as of 2021, 28% of greenhouse gas emissions in the US come from transportation?

That stat makes the transportation sector the largest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, thanks to the burning of fossil fuel for vehicles like cars, trucks, ships, trains, and planes.

Yeah, we know… kind of a bummer, and maybe not the news you want to start your morning with. So let’s get to the good stuff: the Carbon Reduction Program, an effort to reduce transportation emissions through local and statewide projects that are federally funded.

What is the Carbon Reduction Program?

In an effort to reduce transportation emissions across the US, the Carbon Reduction Program was created in 2021 to distribute $6.4 billion in formula funding over a five-year period.

The funding goes toward states developing carbon reduction strategies and projects that reduce transportation emissions. Some examples include:

  • Creation of new road diets for traffic management
  • Electrification of freight vehicles or personal cars
  • Construction of rapid public transit corridors
  • Installation of bike safety infrastructure

What’s driving the news?

By Wednesday, Nov. 15, states and designated metropolitan planning organizations are tasked with unveiling their strategies to reduce emissions through the program.

They’ll also need to disclose which projects will be funded by the program — whether that be installing protected bike lanes in one city, creating a new bus rapid transit system in another, or a different project that helps reduce carbon emissions.

Funding

While the FY2024 funding that will be allocated to urbanized areas hasn’t been released yet, you can still view last fiscal year’s funding sheet, which shows that a total of 224 urbanized areas with a 200,000+ population — from Washington, DC to Chattanooga, TN — received funding.

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