CARB has released for public review the Draft 2022 Scoping Plan Update. The June 23/25 CARB Board Meeting will have public comment (and board decision?) on this document. The document is 255 pages, not even including many appendices. I have only just begun to review the document, but what I see so far is pretty disappointing. For a brief introduction, see the four page Executive Summary. Also see Air Board Seeks Comments on Climate Scoping Plan; Shoup Urges a Look at Parking.
From the Executive Summary: “… rapidly moving to zero-emission transportation, electrifying the cars, buses, trains, and trucks that now constitute California’s single largest source of planet-warming pollution”. Notice that bicycles are not mentioned. Even more worrisome is that one third of the carbon reduction is from actions that capture carbon, including natural environments and as-yet unavailable carbon capture technology.
From the Ensure Equity and Affordability section: “… effective actions to move with all possible speed to clean energy, zero-emission cars and trucks, energy efficient homes, sustainable agriculture, and resilient forests…”. No mention of electric bikes or transit. Unless CARB intends to buy every low income person in the state an electric car, its plan will not meet with needs of low income and disinvested communities. What would meet those needs is a transit-first policy and funding, with significant state investment in making walking and bicycling more welcoming and safer.
In the entire document, there are two instances of ‘bike’ and three of ‘bicycling’ (and none of bicycle or e-bike or electric bicycle). There is one instance of ‘transit’. Six instances of ‘walking’. Ten instances of ‘active transportation’, but 163 instances of ‘transportation’, many of them referring to other documents and programs. In contrast, 157 instances of ‘vehicle’. Not hard to see where the focus is.
Here is a wordcloud of just the Executive Summary section. See if it speaks to your concerns. A wordcloud of the entire document would show vehicle prominently.
CARB seems incapable of imagining a future that is not dominated by cars. They simply intend to replace existing cars with electric cars. Put simply, this is climate arson, by the very agency that is supposed to be working on climate change in a serious way.
Sadly, many of the climate change and environmental organizations seem aligned with this focus on vehicle electrification.
I’ve said it before and will repeat (again and again): electric cars, or any electric vehicles other than bikes, are only a partial solution to the climate crisis. Serious solutions will include and prioritize walking, bicycling and transit. If you are an electric car booster and not working to reduce the dominance of motor vehicles in our cities and lives, you are not serious about climate change. And you are certainly not serious about livable cities.