Transportation

Let us support a transportation policy that emphasizes the use of mass transit and alternatives to the automobile and truck for transport. We call for major public investment in mass transportation, so that such systems are cheap or free to the public and are safe, accessible, and easily understandable to first-time users. We need ecologically sound forms of transportation that minimize pollution and maximize efficiency.

Surfaces impermeable to rainwater, polluted storm run-off; paved over or polluted wetlands, the heat island effect, air pollution, and acid rain are all directly related to a transportation system run amuck.

Massive subsidies to the auto and fossil fuel industries, as well as an unworkable approach by urban planners, maintain the auto’s dominance of our cityscapes. The present-day approach of upgrading streets to accommodate increased traffic generates new traffic because access is now easier, and people will now take jobs further from their homes or purchase homes further from their jobs. Some people shift from public transit to private cars due to the trip time in cars being shorter. As patronage for public transit decreases, public transit loses funding, becomes less viable, and service deteriorates thus encouraging even more people to use their cars.

To counteract these trends and reduce auto use, We should advocate the following strategies:

1. Pedestrians and Bicyclists

  1. Make streets, neighborhoods and commercial districts more pedestrian friendly.
  2. Increase the greenery of streets.
  3. Utilize traffic-calming methods, where the design of streets promotes safe speeds and safe interaction with pedestrians. Create auto-free zones.
  4. Develop extensive networks of bikeways, bicycle lanes and paths. Include bike racks on all public transit.
  5. Maintain free community bicycle fleets, and provide necessary support for cyclists.

2. Mass Transit

  1. Redirect resources that currently go to enhancing auto capacity into expanding human-scale transit options.
  2. Develop affordable mass transit systems that are more economical to use than private vehicles.
  3. Encourage employer subsidies of transit commuter tickets for employees, funded by government Congestion Management grants.
  4. Use existing auto infrastructure for transit expansion where possible. Light rail could be established in expressway medians through metropolitan high-density corridors.
  5. Include land use decisions in transportation issues, with consideration of the need for mass transit to have a market and be viable, and with attention paid to crosscommuting the practice of people commuting to a place where they could and should live.
  6. Expand our country’s network of rail lines, including high-speed regional passenger service.
  7. Transfer ownership and operation of all intercity railroad trackage currently under control of freight railroads to responsible and adequately funded public agencies, as is done with highways, to provide for efficiency and safety of all rail traffic.

3. Motor Vehicles

  1. Place a moratorium on highway widening, appropriating funds instead for mass transit and facilities for pedestrians and bicyclists.
  2. Mandate HOV (High Occupancy Vehicle) lanes on freeways, and lower tolls for carpools.
  3. Discourage unnecessary auto use by eliminating free parking in non-residential areas well served by mass transit, and establish preferential parking rates for HOV.
  4. Regularly increase Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards to levels which truly challenge automakers to improve the state of the art, using the fuel economy performance of vehicles worldwide for reference. Eliminate the distinction between cars and light trucks, the footprint loophole, the E85 loophole and the 8500-pound exemption. Eliminate the perverse incentives for alternative fuels that increase the nation’s petroleum consumption. Enact a Fee & Dividend system on the carbon content of gasoline, Diesel fuel and E85.
  5. Enact a fuel-economy-based Federal sales tax that creates a significant incentive for people to select more efficient vehicles, and for automakers to make them available in the United States.
  6. Lead by example, using government procurement to put more high-efficiency and alternative-fuel vehicles into service.
  7. Electrify truck stops, freight terminals and loading docks. Enact and enforce anti-idling regulations. Idling engines consume nearly a billion gallons of gasoline and Diesel fuel and emit ten million tons of carbon dioxide annually (2007 data).
  8. Encourage carpooling programs, telecommuting, and other creative solutions to reduce commuter traffic congestion.
  9. Remove the most-polluting vehicles from the road by requiring every vehicle to comply with the emission standards in effect when it was manufactured before issuing or renewing its license.

4. Air Travel

  1. Make airports accessible by local transit systems.
  2. Legislate further incremental reductions in airplane noise and air pollution.
  3. Emphasize the use of light and heavy rail for freight transportation.

5. Freight

We call for incentives to get long-distance truck hauling off of our highways and on to railways. We favor the removal of any administrative impediments to efficient long-haul freight transport by rail. Time is lost when switching goods from one railroad to another, even when the trains are the same size and gauge, and this waste can be eliminated.

Source: Green Party

About mekorganic

I have been a Peace and Social Justice Advocate most all of my adult life. In 2022, I am again running for U.S. Congress in CA under the Green Party. This Blog and website are meant to be a progressive educational site, an alternative to corporate media and the two dominate political parties. Your comments and participation are most appreciated. (Click photo) .............................................. Paid for by Michael Kerr for Congress with Peace and Justice C00803577
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