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Will $6 billion make transportation more sustainable?

Experts believe the newest FHA pledge will not be enough

As part of the $1 trillion infrastructure package passed by Congress in November, the Federal Highway Administration recently pledged $6.4 billion to help states fund projects dedicated to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The money behind this pledge to make transportation more sustainable is to be distributed to states starting in November.

According to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, states would receive the money over the five years to create projects supporting electric vehicles, infrastructure implementation and other initiatives, such as updated trails and outdoor facilities for pedestrians and bicyclists. 

Because transportation is the No. 1 source of carbon emissions in the U.S., experts believe that this amount is far below the total funds needed to help the U.S. meet its carbon-neutral goal by 2050. The U.S. is already behind in reaching its 2030 net-zero goals, according to Danny Gomez, managing director of financial and emerging markets at FreightWaves.

“These initiatives bring the problems that we are facing to the surface and hopefully show the states that it’s important for them to be helping find ways to reduce emissions; it’s a signal,” said Gomez. “We need that signal to spur innovation and create opportunities for businesses [in the industry] to be profitable and create their own contribution to [solving] the problem.”

Experts believe the U.S. would need over $100 billion in investment to make an impact on domestic road transportation carbon emissions numbers.

This underscores the importance of collaboration in the transportation and logistics industry. The industry shouldn’t only rely on the adoption and growth of EV technology. Significant investment in other solutions that drive the efficiency and sustainability of the supply chain and reduce empty miles through increased driver utilization, such as AFV and other technology solutions, is growing increasingly important.

“The challenge here is that everyone is racing to do better individually. We need to race to do better individually and collectively in order to harmonize our activity,” Gomez said. “There’s so many things that need to be done and everyone is working on different problems. Let’s just make sure we all understand how we connect together.”

Britni Chisenall

Britni Chisenall is a sponsored content writer for FreightWaves. She lives in Ooltewah, TN with her husband, Garrett and her cat, Lily. Britni is a graduate of Dalton State College.