The AASHTO Sustainable Transportation: Energy, Infrastructure, and Climate Solutions Steering Committee acts as a focal point and coordinating body for AASHTO's various activities related to climate change. The steering committee members have two primary roles. They act as the focal point and coordination body for AASHTO on relevant policy issues and provide oversight and guidance to AASHTO's Sustainable Transportation: Energy, Infrastructure, and Climate Solutions Technical Assistance Program.
The steering committee members are chosen to represent each of the four AASHTO regions and to provide linkages to other AASHTO standing committees, including the Committees on Environment, Planning, Highways, Rail Transportation, Aviation, Public Transportation, and the Center for Environmental Excellence.
Joan McDonald, NY
State DOT Responses to Extreme Weather Events: This meeting brought together leaders of the AASHTO Standing Committee on Highways, Standing Committee on Planning, and Standing Committee on the Environment as well as the Subcommittees on Asset Management, Maintenance, Design, Construction and Operations to discuss the impact of extreme and high weather events such as heat waves, hurricanes, dust storms, and heavy rain on transportation infrastructure and state DOT responses to these events. Participants discussed what state DOTs are doing, what can be done, how to prioritize activities, and what are easily implementable, cost effective measures/activities that states can undertake. FHWA also discussed work it has been doing with states in this area.
Welcome and Introduction: Paula Hammond, Secretary of Transportation, Washington State DOT, Chair, STEICS
Asset Management and Extreme Weather: Michael Savonis, Fellow, ICF International, panelists Scott Christie, Deputy Secretary for highway Administration, Pennsylvania DOT; Elizabeth Habic, Program manager for Climate Change, Maryland DOT, State Highway Administration. Link to White Paper: Integrating Extreme Weather Risk into Transportation Asset Management
How Can DOT Operations and Maintenance Prepare for Extreme Weather Events: Gregory Johnson, Chief Operations Officer/Chief Engineer, Michigan DOT
Emergency Response Efforts: Brian Searles, Secretary, Vermont Agency of Transportation
FHWA Update, Gloria Shepherd, Associate Administrator, FHWA Office of Planning, Environment & Realty
Research Update: Nanda Srinivasan, Senior Program Officer, Transportation Research Board
Group Discussion and Next Steps
This meeting convened members of AASHTO’s Climate Change Steering Committee to discuss issues related to climate change adaptation. Designated speakers presented information on key climate adaptation research and implementation efforts followed by facilitated discussion about adaptation issues and challenges. The meeting was geared toward providing state DOT engineers with a brief overview of adaptation information, providing an opportunity for the exchange of information, and brainstorming ideas for joint activities or technical services between AASHTO’s Standing Committee on Highways and the steering committee.
Moderator: Paula Hammond, Secretary, Washington State Department of Transportation and Chair of AASHTO’s Sustainable Transportation: Energy, Infrastructure and Climate Solutions Steering Committee
Overview of Climate Adaptation for the Transportation Sector and an Update on NCHRP Project 20-83 (05): Climate Change and the Highway System: Impacts and Adaptation Approaches: Jake Keller, Parsons Brinckerhoff
Overview of FHWA Adaptation Efforts, including Gulf Coast I and II Studies and Adaptation Conceptual Model Pilots: King Gee, Associate Administrator for Infrastructure, FHWA and Gloria Shepherd, Associate Administrator Office of Planning, Environment & Realty, FHWA
Addressing Climate Change Adaptation – California Department of Transportation (presentation) and Caltrans Guidance on Incorporating Sea Level Rise: Richard Land, Chief Deputy Director (Acting), California DOT
This meeting provided an opportunity for members of AASHTO’s Climate Change Steering Committee to convene and discuss a number of issues. Designated speakers provided an overview of climate change policies and shifting priorities at the national and state level, an update on the West Coast Green Highway project, an update on NCHRP 20-83 (05) Climate Change and the Highway System: Impacts and Adaptation Approaches, and an update on FHWA’s climate change activities. The meeting included a group discussion on AASHTO’s climate change program, with the goal of increasing emphasis on issues such as energy security, infrastructure adaptation, and technology.
Moderator: Paula Hammond, Paula Hammond, Secretary, Washington Department of Transportation Chair, AASHTO Climate Change Steering Committee
John Horsley, Executive Director, AASHTO
Judi Greenwald, Vice President of Innovative Solutions, Pew Center on Global Climate Change
Caroline Paulsen, Program Manager for Climate Change, AASHTO
This meeting provided an opportunity for members of AASHTO’s Climate Change Steering Committee to convene and discuss a number of important topics. Designated speakers provided information on electric automobile technology innovations, California MPO actions with regard to SB 375, an overview of the nearly complete NCHRP 20-24 (70) study to update the 2003 Pew report on reducing greenhouse gas emissions from U.S. transportation, and the recently created Transportation Climate Initiative among Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic states. The meeting also included an update from SCOH on climate change adaptation efforts and an update on FHWA’s climate change activities.
Welcome and Introductions: Matthew Garrett, Director, Oregon Department of Transportation
The Role of Electricity as a Transportation Fuel: Sean McNamara, Manager, Member Relations, PJM Interconnection
California SB 375 and Action at the MPO Level: Gordon Garry, Director of Research and Analysis, Sacramento Area Council of Governments
Opportunities to Address Climate Change Through Reauthorization: Nick Nigro, Solutions Fellow, Pew Center for Global Climate Change
Climate Change Adaptation Update:
SCOH: Jim McDonnell, Program Director for Engineering, AASHTO; Kevin Chesnik, Administrator of the Division of Transportation System Development, Wisconsin DOT
FHWA: Gloria Shepherd, Associate Administrator for Planning, Environment and Realty, FHWA and Steering Committee Members
The Transportation and Climate Initiative of the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic States: Mark Stout, Independent Transportation Consultant