with similar provisions was unveiled by the chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, Barbara Boxer, and Senator John Kerry in October 2009. Earlier, in May 2009, the Obama administration brokered a compromise between the automobile industry and California over proposed state regulation of motor vehicle fuel economy standards by agreeing to accelerate achievement of increased fuel economy standards enacted by Congress as recently as 2007 from 2020 to 2016. Yet to come is the reauthorization of surface transportation programs, which affects infrastructure investment policies as well as policies affecting the use of the infrastructure. In June 2009, Chairman Oberstar and the leadership of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, U.S. House of Representatives, unveiled a sweeping proposal for reauthorizing transportation legislation, which included significant linkages to the climate change legislation already passed in the House.

The House climate bill, the proposed climate bill of Chairman Boxer and Senator Kerry, and the proposed surface transportation reauthorization legislation of Chairman Oberstar would require extensive new planning processes under which officials at the federal, state, and local levels would set targets for transportation GHG reduction and then develop plans and programs to achieve them. The achievement of these goals would be enforced through provisions in the Clean Air Act that allow withholding of federal aid for noncompliance (Holt 2009, 56) and possibly through citizen lawsuits.2

States have also been active in responding to climate change. About three dozen states have created climate action plans, of which about half have set specific GHG reduction targets, typically 75 to 85 percent below current levels by 2050. Few states have transportation-specific targets; rather, the statewide targets are meant to inform the planning of state and metropolitan planning agencies. California, however, has been at the forefront of state action. The state has set aggressive GHG emission stan-


The transportation planning and GHG target-setting provisions are in a title of the Waxman–Markey climate bill that amends the Clean Air Act. Metropolitan planning organizations and others have raised concerns about whether these new provisions would be subject to citizen lawsuits. [See letter to Chairman Waxman from the Association of Metropolitan Planning Organizations and others dated June 1, 2009 (http://www.ampo.org/assets/library/209_amponadoaashtoclimatelett.pdf, accessed Aug. 7, 2009).]

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