The Cleaner Air News
The newsletter of the Cleaner Air Partnership
IN THIS ISSUE
CAP Supports Assembly Bill 146
RT's TransitRenewal Program
PPIC Report: Californians and the Environment
SAVE THE DATE!
CAP Quarterly Luncheon September 16, 2011
11:30AM-1:30PM
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www.cleanerairpartnership.orgAugust 2011
CAP Seeks Support for AB 146

 

New Bill Provides Sacramento Region CARB Board Representation

 

A new piece of legislation currently under consideration by the California State Senate, if signed into law, would provide the Sacramento region with a seat on the California Air Resources Board (CARB) Board of Directors and empower the region to fully participate in key CARB decisions regarding implementation of AB 32 (California's Global Warming Solutions Act) and SB 375 (California's Sustainable Communities and Climate Protection Act).

The Sacramento region is in violation of two key federal air quality standards, one for ozone ("smog") and another for particulate matter ("soot"). It is the largest non-attainment region in the state without designated membership on the CARB. Air districts play a vital role in ensuring that proposed ARB regulations can be sensibly implemented by local communities and businesses.

Assembly Bill 146 would require the Governor to appoint to the CARB a board member from one of the local air districts in the federally designated Sacramento non-attainment region. "Passage of AB 146 will allow the decision making process to include someone from the Sacramento non-attainment area who is more directly involved with the community and understands our unique needs," said Bill Mueller, Manager of the Cleaner Air Partnership. "The air districts in the Sacramento region are well positioned to help CARB develop solutions that protect both the environment and the economy."

The Cleaner Air Partnership encourages passage of AB 146. Please call your State Senator to show your support for this vital piece of legislation.

District 1 - Ted Gaines: (916) 651-4001 or [email protected] 

District 4 - Doug La Malfa: (916) 651-4004 or email here

District 5 - Lois Wolk: (916) 651-4005 or [email protected] senate.ca.gov 

District 6 - Darrell Steinberg: (916) 651-1529 or email here

 Regional Transit Briefs CAPTAC

Transit Renewal

 

The Cleaner Air Partnership Technical Advisory Committee (CAPTAC) met earlier this month with the Sacramento Regional Transit District to discuss the newly proposed "TransitRenewal" program. RoseMary Covington, the Assistant General Manager of Planning and Transit System Development for the Sacramento Regional Transit District shared an overview of the program and discussed how the region utilizes the regional transit system, and the components of the system which are most cost effective.

The TransitRenewal program is an implementation plan for the first five years of a broader twenty-eight year long "TransitAction" plan, the goal of which is to have high speed, timely frequency and sufficient capacity serving key demand areas in the region. Regional development is projected to be most successful in "sustainable communities" where growth is most concentrated.

Light rail has just under half of all total boardings and slightly more than a third of the total cost, while the bus system has a little more than half the total boardings and almost two thirds of the total cost to run. Regional Transit (RT) found that light rail is significantly more cost efficient than bus service because it can accommodate five hundred passengers per driver versus sixty passengers per driver on a bus. RT also advised that if the light rail system is built where growth is projected to be most concentrated, the cost of maintaining public transportation would not only be cost effective, but it would also promote growth in rural communities.

 

Click here for more information about the TransitRenewal program. Please save the date for the next CAPTAC meeting: Wednesday, October 12, 2011.

 
Californians & the Environment

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PPIC Survey Finds Air Pollution is an Important Environmental Issue to Californians 

 

The Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) released a statewide survey in July titled "Californians & the Environment". The PPIC's goal for releasing this survey was to inform state policymakers, encourage discussion, and raise public awareness about Californians' opinions on air pollution, global warming, and energy policy.

Key findings regarding air pollution and the environment included:

  • A small plurality of residents (27%) continue to name air pollution as the most important environmental issue facing the state, while far fewer mention other issues such as water pollution, water supply, energy or oil drilling, or gas prices. Just 4 percent name global warming.
  • Los Angeles and Central Valley residents are more likely than residents elsewhere to say air pollution is a big problem in their region. About four in 10 residents say vehicle emissions are the top contributor to air pollution in their region.

The report states that two in three Californians consider air pollution in their region to be a big problem (29%) or somewhat of a problem (37%). Based on this survey, half of all adults in California believe that air pollution in their region is a very serious (19%) or a somewhat serious (34%) health threat to them and their immediate family.

Compared to surveys in years past, Californians have become more aware of the danger to their health in the form of air pollution. Since first asking this question in 2006, adults have been divided on this issue except in 2007 (50% thought it was a problem, and 42% didn't think it was an issue) and 2010 (41% thought yes, and 52% didn't think it was a problem). In Los Angeles for example, the proportion calling air pollution a big problem reached a record high of 54 percent in July 2006, but dipped to 30 percent in July 2009.

Click here to download the full report.

The Cleaner Air Partnership  is a joint project of Breathe California of Sacramento-Emigrant Trails, the Sacramento Metro Chamber of Commerce and Valley Vision to help the Sacramento Region meet clean air standards that protect health and promote economic growth.