Seth Stark, WSDOT sustainable transportation manager, 360-628-7611 (Olympia)
Noel Brady, WSDOT communications, 206-464-1183 (Seattle)
OLYMPIA – Earth Day 2013 marks an opportunity for Washingtonians to learn how they can reduce their own carbon emissions and how programs at the Washington State Department of Transportation can help.
Transportation-related activities account for nearly half of the total greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in Washington. In its long-range plans and day-to-day operations, WSDOT considers sustainability practices to help reduce GHG emissions in a multitude of ways. This includes designing highways that work best for communities, integrating transit, bicycling and walking into projects and employing techniques that reduce stormwater pollutants.
“The things we do in our homes and on our roads can make a big difference in combating climate change,” said Governor Inslee. “Each and every one of us has an opportunity every day to improve the health of our air, land and water. Whether it’s carpooling with a friend to work one day a week, planning your trips to reduce the miles on your car, or even choosing to commute on your bike, these small steps add up to big reductions in greenhouse gas emissions and polluted stormwater runoff.”
WSDOT is making highways more efficient by smoothing traffic flow through the worst choke points, using fewer building materials by recycling, and extending the lifespan of roads and structures.
“WSDOT is already considered a national leader in transportation technology and sustainability,” said Secretary of Transportation Lynn Peterson. “I hope to build on this strong reputation by partnering with communities to help us maintain our previous investments and continue building a smart multimodal system for the future.”
WSDOT’s sustainable transportation website includes ways people can reduce their carbon footprint by using transit, learning about ridesharing opportunities, accessing electric car charging stations and driving alternative-fuel vehicles.
Some recent WSDOT initiatives to reduce carbon emissions and conserve natural resources include: