energy conservation research activities of the modal administrations are summarized.1

Climate Change and Environmental Forecasting Center

The center sets departmental priorities for multimodal climate change policy analysis and research, and funds from various modal administrations have been pooled there. The center’s funding in FY 2007 was $400,000, and its activities were not budgeted for in subsequent years by the previous administration.2 In 2009 the center began providing a clearinghouse of information and links about climate change and transportation’s role in it, tools and models for practitioners, and reports.3

The center’s most significant activity has been the “Gulf Coast” study, which is part of the governmentwide Global Change Research Program (Savonis et al. 2008). In that study, USDOT partnered with the U.S. Geological Survey to estimate the highway infrastructure along the Gulf Coast that will become more prone to flooding in the future because of land subsidence and higher storm surges. Phase 2, to begin in late 2009, will examine infrastructure impacts at selected locations in greater detail and begin developing information and tools for planners and engineers. The study will also develop risk-assessment tools to assist metropolitan planning organizations and other infrastructure investment decision makers in prioritizing resources and facilities that need protection, accommodation, or relocation.4 Examples of recent, ongoing, and planned research of the center include development of models to allow comparison of modal emissions; partial support for the National Research Council (NRC) study that resulted in the report on adapting transportation to climate change (TRB 2008); and comparisons of emis-

1

Much of the overview of the department’s climate and energy research is drawn from the March 31, 2009, testimony of David Matsuda, Acting Assistant Secretary for Transportation Policy, USDOT, before the Subcommittee on Technology and Innovation, Committee on Science and Technology, U.S. House of Representatives (http://democrats.science.house.gov/Media/file/Commdocs/hearings/2009/Tech/31mar/Matsuda_Testimony.pdf, accessed March 31, 2009).

2

The U.S. Climate Change Science Program for FY 2009, p. 232. See http://www.faa.gov/about/office_org/headquarters_offices/aep/research/, accessed March 31, 2009.

3

http://climate.dot.gov/, accessed April 1, 2009.

4

http://environment.fhwa.dot.gov/strmlng/newsletters/feb09nl.asp, accessed March 30, 2009.



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