The Biden-Harris Administration released the U.S. National Blueprint for Transportation Decarbonization, which will serve as a strategy for cutting all greenhouse emissions from the transportation sector by 2050. Developed by the Departments of Energy (DOE), Transportation (DOT), Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), it “exemplifies the Biden-Harris Administration’s whole-of-government approach to addressing the climate crisis and meeting President Biden’s goals of securing a 100% clean electrical grid by 2035 and reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2050,” according to a press release.
Jointly announced by U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm, U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg, U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Marcia Fudge, and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Michael S. Regan, the Blueprint is the first milestone deliverable of the historic memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed by the agencies in September of last year. The Blueprint will be followed by more detailed decarbonization action plans, to be developed and implemented by these agencies in cooperation with governments at the state, local, and tribal level, philanthropic organizations, the private sector, and global partners.
“Transportation policy is inseparable from housing and energy policy, and transportation accounts for a major share of US greenhouse gas emissions, so we must work together in an integrated way to confront the climate crisis,” said U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg. “Every decision about transportation is also an opportunity to build a cleaner, healthier, more prosperous future. When our air is cleaner; when more people can get good-paying jobs; when everyone stays connected to the resources they need and the people they love, we are all better off.”
The transportation sector — which includes all modes of travel through land, air, and sea to move people and goods — accounts for one-third of all domestic greenhouse gas emissions, negatively affecting the health and well-being of millions of Americans, particularly those in disadvantaged communities. Transportation costs are the second largest annual household expense in the U.S., and for the poorest Americans, the financial burden of transportation is disproportionately and unsustainably high, according to the Administration.
The Administration believes that a well-planned transition to a decarbonized transportation system can address these and other inequities and provide equitable, affordable, and accessible options for moving people and goods. Further developing and deploying clean-energy technologies, such as electric vehicles and hydrogen and sustainable fuels, while also building out the supporting infrastructure for clean transportation, will create good-paying jobs in all segments of the transportation sector while strengthening America’s energy independence, according to the Administration’s press release.
The Blueprint is a critical step in the ongoing partnership between DOE, DOT, EPA, HUD, and stakeholders and will be followed by more detailed sector-specific action plans to create a comprehensive suite of strategies to realize an improved and sustainable transportation future.