United NationsDepartment of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

United States of America

The United States looks forward to sharing and learning during this CSD 18/19 session. We are here to emphasize sustainable solutions to the challenging transportation issues under discussion.
Transportation is essential to economic growth and stability in developed and developing countries, and efforts to make transportation environmentally, socially, and economically sustainable are essential to achieving our sustainable development goals.
To realize sustainable transportation within our own country, the U.S. government is focused on innovative solutions that incentivize clean, efficient and effective transportation systems and technology. Specifically, solutions that --
?X capitalize on our successes using a variety of approaches, including good governance practices, partnerships, and voluntary approaches
?X aggressively reduce transportation impacts on air quality, climate, and other environmental systems,
?X improve human health, particularly for vulnerable populations such as children and the elderly,
?X mitigate congestion.
The U.S. has a long history of reducing conventional air pollution from all transportation modes. Transportation also has significant impacts for climate change. Efforts to improve the environmental sustainability of transportation are also a key piece of the President¡¦s commitment to aggressive action on reducing greenhouse gas emissions. In keeping, our Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Department of Transportation (US DOT) have jointly finalized the first U.S. GHG standards for light-duty vehicles ¡V which will reduce carbon dioxide emissions to a level equivalent to taking 50 million cars and light trucks off our roads in 2030. The U.S. also places strategic importance on mass transit infrastructure, passenger rail, bicycling and walking, and smart growth programs.
As we improve implementation of these existing solutions, we are also looking towards new and innovative solutions. We are supporting research on new battery technology. Around our ports we are looking to improve intermodal transportation efficiency. Through a showcase effort ¡V proposed by the U.S., Canada, and France and approved by the International Maritime Organization in March ¡V a newly designated Emission Control Area (ECA) in North America will require large ships in the ECA to use dramatically cleaner fuel and technologies, providing substantial public health benefits that extend
hundreds of miles inland in the U.S., Canada, and French territories and benefiting marine and terrestrial ecosystems. We hope this may serve as a model which other countries may wish to adopt.
We emphasize Partnerships as proven and effective tools. We have submitted to the UN CSD database a case study on our Environmental Protection Agency¡¦s SmartWay Partnership Program, which now serves as a model for other countries (e.g., Canada, China, the European Union). SmartWay is a voluntary public-private partnership that is effectively reducing greenhouse gas emissions across the global supply chain and saving transportation providers money through advanced technologies and practices. We have brought with us the successes of our own domestic clean diesel campaign to our U.S. participation in the Partnership for Clean Fuels and Vehicles ¡V which has gotten the lead out of gasoline and is now turning its attention to sulfur in gasoline and diesel. And we share our sustainable transportation innovations across the globe ¡V for example, public transportation systems in Chile, China, India, Mexico, and Thailand have benefited from EPA¡¦s diesel retrofit technology pilot programs to reduce air pollution. Our experts will be at the U.S. table all day tomorrow to provide you more details on SmartWay and our PCFV participation.
Cross-departmental partnerships within governments provide innovative, cross-sectoral solutions to promote sustainable transportation. The USDOT, EPA, and Department of Housing and Urban Development have partnered to improve access to affordable housing, provide more transportation options, and lower transportation costs while protecting the environment and promoting smart growth.
Partnerships across different levels of government can effectively harness regional and local knowledge and networks to implement transportation solutions in a regionally or locally appropriate manner. The Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Program has incentivized and supported state governments in conducting surface transportation projects to reduce congestion and improve air quality. USDOT has also provided substantial infrastructure investments and research funding for improving transportation sustainability directly and to state and local governments, including $8.4 billion in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
Science-based monitoring and GIS tools used by the USDOT to mitigate transportation impacts on ecosystems and communities demonstrate how we harness innovative technologies to safeguard human and environmental health. These efforts are detailed in several case studies the U.S. has submitted to the CSD database. U.S. policies engage low-income individuals, minority groups, and women in the planning process. USDOT Technology Exchange Centers facilitate government-to-government information-sharing on safe, secure, efficient transportation..
In closing, the U.S. has developed a number of good governance practices, partnership programs, and innovative solutions, working collaboratively with companies, organizations, and communities, to achieve sustainable transportation for the 21st century. We look forward to further sharing with you our lessons learned.