WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Transportation’s (USDOT) Federal Highway Administration (FWHA) has announced plans to use $7.3 billion to help prepare the nation’s infrastructure for climate change.
According to a USDOT news release, the FHWA has revealed a funding formula for the money, which is part of President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.
“In every part of the country, climate change is impacting roads, bridges and rail lines that Americans rely on — endangering homes, lives and livelihoods in the process,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said. “Using funds from President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, we’re launching this unprecedented effort to help communities protect their transportation infrastructure from extreme weather and improve routes that first responders and firefighters need during disasters.”
The new Promoting Resilient Operations for Transformative, Efficient and Cost-Saving Transportation (PROTECT) Formula Program funding is available to states over five years to make transportation infrastructure “more resilient to future weather events and other natural disasters by focusing on resilience planning, making resilience improvements to existing transportation assets and evacuation routes, and addressing at-risk highway infrastructure,” according to the USDOT news release.
In general, eligible projects include highway and transit projects, bicycle and pedestrian facilities and port facilities including those that help improve evacuations or disaster relief.
States are encouraged to work with regional and local partner organizations to prioritize transportation and emergency response improvements, as well as address vulnerabilities, the news release stated.
“We see the effects of climate change and extreme weather play out across the country every week, with extreme temperatures and rainfall and resulting flooding and wildfires that damage and in some cases destroy roads, bridges and other transportation infrastructure,” Acting Federal Highway Administrator Stephanie Pollack said. “The PROTECT Formula Program will help make transportation infrastructure more resilient to current and future weather events and at the same time make communities safer during these events.”
Eligible resilience improvements can involve adapting existing transportation infrastructure or new construction to keep communities safe by bolstering infrastructure’s ability to withstand extreme weather events and other physical hazards that are becoming more common and intense.
Eligible project choices may include the use of natural or green infrastructure to buffer future storm surges and provide flood protection, as well as aquatic ecosystem restoration. PROTECT projects can also help improve the resilience of transportation networks that serve traditionally underserved and underrepresented communities, particularly during natural disasters and evacuations.
PROTECT builds on other USDOT actions to address the climate crisis and that support the Biden Administration’s whole-of-government approach to reducing greenhouse gas pollution by 2030.
Other USDOT actions include a proposed rule for states and municipalities to track and reduce greenhouse gas emissions; the Carbon Reduction Program, which will provide $6.4 billion in formula funding to states and local governments to develop carbon reduction strategies; and the National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) Formula Program, which will provide $5 billion to states to build out a national electric vehicle charging network, an important step towards making electric vehicle charging accessible to all Americans.
The Trucker News Staff produces engaging content for not only TheTrucker.com, but also The Trucker Newspaper, which has been serving the trucking industry for more than 30 years. With a focus on drivers, the Trucker News Staff aims to provide relevant, objective content pertaining to the trucking segment of the transportation industry. The Trucker News Staff is based in Little Rock, Arkansas.
Climate Change is a natural thing that slowly takes place over hundreds of years… Fact… This administration is full of $hit.
I agree with dean Wellsfry. Climate change is a bunch of BULL$H!T!