Sustainable transportation refers to alternate modes of transportation that are "green", have a low impact on the environment, and balances our current and future needs. Examples of sustainable transportation include walking, biking, using public transportation, carpooling, and driving an alternative fuel vehicle (hybrid-vehicles, electric-vehicles, etc.)
Transportation is one of the largest sources of air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. Anyone can help reduce their carbon footprint by choosing sustainable transportation options as much as possible. By taking more sustainable modes of transportation, it will provide benefits for yourself and the City of Arcata. These benefits include:
- Reduced traffic congestion
- Reduced air pollution and related risks
- Reduced greenhouse gas emissions
- Reduced transportation costs
- Increased physical activity and related benefits
- Increased social interaction
- Support for local businesses
- Overall healthier lifestyles
We should also strive to make our personal automobiles more energy efficient and cleaner. If your car was made after 2000, check to see how often you need to change motor oil. When purchasing a vehicle, it is best to choose the most fuel-efficient model you can. You may also want to consider alternative fuel vehicle choices, such as battery electric vehicles, gasoline-electric hybrid vehicles, bio-fuel powered vehicles, and hydrogen-powered vehicles. These various options need to be considered carefully in order to determine the best alternative
Electric Vehicle Charging Stations
If you drive an electric vehicle, the City of Arcata has an electric vehicle charging station located at its 8th and F Street parking lot, which will allows electric vehicle drivers to recharge their vehicles while downtown. Installed in the spring of 2014, it is operated by ChargePoint and costs about $3 for a full recharge. For information on how to use this charging station, go to the ChargePoint online resource.
The transportation sector accounts for a significant portion of our energy use and greenhouse gas emissions. The City of Arcata aims to promote the use of alternative modes of transportation, including transit buses, bicycles, and walking. To increase the use of these modes of travel, they need to be both convenient and attractive. We can do this by expanding transit bus services and access (like Humboldt State University Jack Pass), expanding bike lanes and facilities, making our city more pedestrian friendly, and designing our city using "smart growth" concepts that encourage people to use sustainable modes of transportation more often.
For more information about what the City is doing to make Arcata more bikeable, see the Pedestrian and Bicycle Master Plan (2010).
In addition to promoting alternative transportation, the City of Arcata has been committed to 'greening' the municipal fleet since 2001 when the first "Green Fleet" Proclamation was passed. The City has a total of 23 alternative fuel vehicles and 3 pieces of equipment running on compressed natural gas, biodiesel, and electricity.
Additionally, in September of 2007, the City passed the "Green Fleet Policy," establishing fuel efficiency and alternative fuels as top priorities in vehicle procurement, and establishing a target fuel-use reduction of 10% by 2015.
Check Your Number (Motor-Oil-Changing Guidelines)
Drive Clean California (Buying Guide)
Humboldt Bay Bicycle Commuters Association
Humboldt County Association of Governments (Regional Transportation Planning Agency)
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Green Vehicle Guide