1000 Friends of Oregon joins national call to lower greenhouse gas emissions

The transportation sector is the largest contributor of greenhouse gas emissions in the country. That's why we've just signed onto a letter urging the federal Department of Transportation to quickly finalize their rule requiring each state to measure greenhouse gas emissions and establish targets to lower those emissions. In signing on to this letter, we're joining a growing list of more than 100 local and national organizations asking for action on the climate crisis that’s here now.

We’re concerned that the Biden Administration has stalled out on implementing their proposed rule, which has the potential to help reduce our country’s overall carbon emissions by infusing planning decisions with information on how those decisions increase or decrease greenhouse gas emissions.

The proposed federal rule mirrors and bolsters other rulemaking happening in the state, including Oregon’s Climate Friendly and Equitable Communities program, of which 1000 Friends has been a leader and steadfast supporter, and supports many aspects of Oregon Land Use Goal 12, which aims to provide "a safe, convenient and economic transportation system" and address the needs of "transportation disadvantaged."

Nationally and here in Oregon, land use, transportation, and carbon emissions are inseparable: The location and design of transportation infrastructure influence how land is used and developed, the right land use in the right place is critical to the success of getting around by ways other than driving a car, and measuring greenhouse gas emissions from transportation projects helps identify areas where emissions are high and can guide land use decisions that prioritize sustainable development. This includes promoting compact, mixed-use development, encouraging active transportation (e.g., walking and cycling), and improving public transit systems.

For more than two years, 1000 Friends has been involved in the National Campaign for Transit Justice, a project aimed at increasing federal funding and support for transit. The campaign first came about as a response to a lack of transit support in the federal infrastructure packages passed. That’s why it seems fitting that we also sign on to this letter now, alongside peer organizations and like-minded activists urging federal action. You can read the full text of the letter below:



May 9, 2023 

The Honorable Pete Buttigieg Secretary of Transportation
1200 New Jersey Ave SE Washington, DC 20590 

The Honorable Shalanda Young Director, Office of Management and Budget
1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW Washington, DC 20500 

Dear Secretary Buttigieg and Director Young, 

We write to you today because we are concerned that the Biden Administration’s proposed rule requiring state departments of transportation to measure greenhouse gas emissions and establish targets to lower those emissions has not yet been completed. Given the urgency of the climate crisis, we urge you to move this rule through the regulatory process without further delay. 

As you are aware, the transportation sector is the largest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions in the United States. Because of this, there is no time to waste as record amounts of federal taxpayer funds are already flowing to states thanks to the infrastructure law (the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act or IIJA). 

Federal transportation law requires the Department of Transportation to establish a framework for assessing the performance of our surface transportation network. As part of that framework, this rule will ensure that federal grantees measure greenhouse gas emissions from transportation and set targets for reducing those emissions. The rule does not establish targets or regulate states’ transportation plans. Instead, each state will set its own targets and adopt its own strategies for reaching them. States will regularly report on their progress, increasing transparency for taxpayers around the use of federal funds. This approach aligns with the federal-state partnership that has characterized the federal transportation program for decades. 

The rule is also very popular, with more than 100,000 comments in support of the Department of Transportation’s proposed greenhouse gas rule were submitted during the comment period. IIJA is a historic investment in our nation’s infrastructure, and the public has a right to know how those funds affect our climate future. 

The addition of the greenhouse gas measure to the Department’s existing performance measurement framework will shine needed light on the climate impacts of these investments and lead to more informed decision-making. The climate crisis is not coming; it is here now. And given that urgency, we ask for your support in quickly finalizing this rule to meet the moment of crisis we are in.



  • 10,000 Friends of Pennsylvania
  • 1000 Friends of Iowa
  • 1000 Friends of Oregon
  • 350 Mass
  • 350.org
  • Active Transportation Alliance
  • ActiveSGV
  • Alaska Environment
  • Arizona PIRG
  • Better Eugene-Springfield Transportation
  • Bike Durham
  • BikeLA (formerly the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition)
  • BikeWalkNC
  • Center for Neighborhood Technology (CNT)
  • Center for Popular Democracy
  • Centra Maryland Transportation Alliance
  • City of Des Moines
  • City of Reno, NV
  • Clean Air Council
  • Clean Energy Action
  • Climate Reality Project Chicago Metro
  • Colorado Dem. Party - Energy and Environment Initiative
  • Coalition for Responsible Transportation Priorities
  • Coalition for Smarter Growth
  • Colorspace Architecture & Urban Design
  • Commuters Take Action
  • ConnPIRG
  • CoPIRG
  • Day One
  • Denver Streets Partnership
  • Detroit Greenways Coalition
  • Detroit People's PlatformEarth Day Mobile Bay, Inc.
  • East Metro Strong
  • Empower Out Future
  • Environment America
  • Environment California
  • Environment Colorado
  • Environment Connecticut
  • Environment Georgia
  • Environment Illinois
  • Environment Maryland
  • Environment Massachusetts
  • Environment New Jersey
  • Environment Oregon
  • Environment Texas
  • Environment Virginia
  • Environment Washington
  • Environmental Law & Policy Center
  • Evergreen Action
  • Farm&City
  • Florida PIRG
  • Friends of Caltrain
  • Frog Ferry
  • Genesis
  • Georgia PIRG
  • Go Green Illinois
  • Greater Greater Washington
  • Grow Smart RI
  • Hoosier Environmental Council
  • Illinois PIRG
  • Indivisible Colorado
  • Iowa PIRG
  • LA Forward
  • Labor Network for Sustainability
  • LINK Houston
  • Maryland PIRG
  • Massachusetts Action for Justice
  • Mobilify Southwestern Pennsylvania
  • MoPIRG
  • Mothers Out Front
  • Move California
  • Move Redmond
  • National Association of City Transportation Officials
  • Natural Resources Defense Council
  • No More Freeways
  • Ohio PIRG
  • OPAL Environmental Justice Oregon
  • PA – Jewish Earth Alliance
  • PennEnvironment
  • PennPIRG
  • PeopleForBikes
  • Pittsburghers for Public Transit
  • Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada
  • Rails-to-Trails Conservancy
  • Rekor Systems
  • Reno + Sparks Chamber of Commerce
  • Rethink35
  • RI Transit Riders
  • San Luis Valley Ecosystem Council
  • Seamless Bay Area
  • Sierra Club
  • Southern Environmental Law Center
  • Southwest Energy Efficiency Project
  • Streets For All
  • Streets PAC
  • Sustain Charlotte
  • Sustainable Claremont
  • TexPIRG
  • The Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia
  • The Climate Reality Project: Chicago Metro Chapter
  • The Street Trust
  • Together for Brothers
  • Transit Forward Philadelphia
  • Transit Matters
  • Transportation Choices Coalition
  • Transportation for Massachusetts
  • Transportation Riders United (Detroit)
  • Tri-State Transportation Campaign
  • U.S.PIRG
  • Ulupono Initiative
  • Union of Concerned Scientists
  • Virginia Organizing
  • Wake UP Wake County
  • WashPIRG