State directives encourage sustainable transportation solutions
The State Legislature passed laws in 2008 and 2009 that:
- Established GHG emission reduction goals for the state (Revised Code of Washington (RCW) 70.235.020).
- Established vehicle miles traveled (VMT) reduction benchmarks and assigned specific implementation, monitoring, economic assessment and analysis tasks to us (RCW 47.01.440).
- Directs us to report energy usage to assess the need for energy audits (RCW 19.27A.190).
- Requires us to install outlets for electric vehicle charging in our state’s fleet parking and maintenance facilities (RCW 43.19.648 (4)).
- Instructs us to participate in the development of a statewide integrated climate change response strategy (RCW 43.21M.010).
- Directs us to quantify and reduce our GHG emissions to achieve state agency’s mandatory targets (RCW 70.235.050).
- Directs state agencies to develop strategies to reduce fuel consumption and emissions from state vehicle fleet and phase in fuel economy standards (RCW 43.41.130).
Executive order from the Governor
Governor Christine Gregoire issued Executive Order 09-05, Washington's Leadership on Climate Change. It directs us to work with the state Department of Ecology and Department of Commerce, local governments and other stakeholders to study the effects of transportation on the environment and climate change.
The order calls upon the agencies to estimate current and future statewide levels of the vehicle miles traveled (VMT) in Washington and evaluate potential changes in the state’s VMT benchmarks established by law (RCW 47.01.440).
Governor Gregoire further directed the agencies to work closely with the four largest metropolitan planning organizations to develop and adopt regional transportation plans that provide transportation alternatives, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and achieve the annual per capita VMT benchmarks.
The executive order also directs us to work with other state agencies and the states of Oregon and California to develop and seek federal funds to implement a project for the electrification of the West Coast interstate highway and associated metropolitan centers. The Governor also directed the agencies to request federal funding to purchase electric vehicles and install public infrastructure for electric and other high-efficiency, zero- or low-carbon vehicles.