Sustain Charlotte asks NCDOT to work to mitigate climate change

Sustain Charlotte recently joined Southern Environmental Law Center and six other organizations in sending a letter to North Carolina’s Secretary of Transportation. On October 29, 2018, Governor Roy Cooper signed Executive Order 80: North Carolina’s Commitment to Address Climate Change and Transition to a Clean Energy Economy. Transportation is the second highest source of greenhouses gases that contribute to climate change in NC. In this letter, we call for NCDOT to support the goals of Executive Order 80.

Read the introduction below, and view the full letter here.

Road with heavy traffic

USA, Arizona, Phoenix, traffic on congested freeway, elevated view

Dear Secretary Trogdon,

I write today on behalf of the Southern Environmental Law Center, North Carolina Conservation Network, Center for Biological Diversity, National Resource Defense Council, Sierra Club, Clean Air Carolina, Sound Rivers, and Sustain Charlotte.  Together our groups are excited to collaborate with the Department of Transportation as you work to implement Governor Cooper’s Executive Order 80 to address climate change.  As you know, the transportation sector is the second leading contributor to greenhouse gas emissions in the state, and poised to quickly become the first. Accordingly, the Department has a tremendous opportunity to help mitigate North Carolina’s contribution to the climate crisis, and to achieve the GHG emissions reduction goals established in the Executive Order.

We are pleased to see the Department beginning to recognize this enormous potential and its responsibility to see it realized, and we look forward to working with the agency to take advantage of every opportunity to reduce emissions and to improve resiliency. We want to be sure, then, that NCDOT takes full advantage of this Executive Order to think about climate change broadly. While we are excited about the plan to expand the number of Zero-Emission Vehicles in North Carolina, we want to stress that this step forms only a small part of the Department’s responsibility to help our state meet its emissions reductions.  In the attached letter we outline a number of steps the Department can and must take to ensure that our state meets the goals set out in the Executive Order.  By taking these steps we know North Carolina can quickly become a national leader on the issue of transportation and climate.

We look forward to further discussions on this topic.

Thank you so much for your leadership,

Kym Hunter

Senior Attorney

Southern Environmental Law Center

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