Now is the time to get AB 7 passed on the Assembly floor!

Call your assemblymember before NOON on Tuesday, May 31st!

Crowded streets and city smog

Our sister organization, 350 Bay Area Action, sent the following email blast today, calling for all climate activists to call their CA Assemblymembers before noon tomorrow. We are publishing the information here so you can tweet it, post it on Facebook and other social media, and send it to your friends and family.

This is a pivotal week in the legislature for climate action.

Now is the time to get AB 7 passed on the Assembly floor!

Our transportation sector plays a central role in driving the climate crisis, contributing approximately 40% of the state’s greenhouse gas emissions, and accounting for nearly $30 billion in state and local funds. A recent report from the Strategic Growth Council shows significant misalignment between the transportation projects the State funds and our climate goals.

California cannot reach its ambitious climate targets while continuing to invest so heavily in projects that increase our dependence on fossil fuel-powered vehicles.

AB 7 will turn this situation around!

PLEASE call or write your Assemblymember before noon on Tuesday, May 31st.

(find your rep here)

Phone Script

I’m (name) from (community) and I request that Assemblymember ____ vote ‘Yes’ on AB 7 at the upcoming Assembly Floor vote. This is why:

  • 40% of California’s carbon emissions and $30 billion of the budget are in the Transportation sector.
  • AB 7 requires additional transportation project selection criteria that reflect the Governor’s Climate Action Plan for Transportation Infrastructure (CAPTI), as well as the Federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA). This bill will result in significant carbon emission reductions, clean energy transit systems, and needed pollution relief for disadvantaged communities.
  • California cannot successfully combat the climate crisis unless we approve more Transportation projects that reduce our dependence on single-occupant driving and reduce ‘Vehicle Miles Traveled,’ support clean transportation alternatives with ZEV charging stations, electric rail and buses, AND more walk/bike paths to achieve our carbon emissions reduction targets by 2030. AB 7 will facilitate all of the above.

Can I count on Assemblymember _________ to vote AYE on AB 7?

Sample Email

Dear Assemblymember ___________,

I am emailing you as a constituent asking for your support on AB 7 (Friedman).

Extreme weather events and sea level rise are progressing faster than climate models predicted. California is in a climate emergency, and your leadership is needed now to advance policies that reduce climate risks and promote solutions. Forty percent of California’s carbon emissions come from the transportation sector. State transportation programs must begin to significantly reduce these emissions, especially given that transportation projects are allocated $30BN in the state budget. CARB data indicates the state has made very little progress within the Transportation sector toward the 2030 carbon emission reduction goals. The science is clear: we must reduce carbon emissions by 40% as of 2030.

AB 7 requires that Caltrans, California State Transportation Agency (CalSTA), and the California Transportation Commission (CTC) incorporate principles of the Climate Action Plan for Transportation Infrastructure (CAPTI), and the Federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), into their processes for transportation project development, selection, and implementation, starting in 2025. Re the California Transportation Plan (CTP) process, AB 7 requires a financial element that summarizes the full cost of implementation of the CTP, realistic projection of available revenues, and a discussion of trade-offs within the Plan. The bill also requires accountability via an analysis of how effectively Caltrans, CalSTA, and CTC are achieving the principles outlined in the CAPTI, IIJA, and the Federal Justice40 initiative.

Examples of AB 7 transportation project selection criteria include:

  • improvement of transportation infrastructure safety, resilience and overall condition, including ADA accommodations,
  • “future-proofing” of transit, including incorporation of innovative clean energy technologies, EV charging station ramp-up, and progress toward development of a statewide integrated rail and transit network,
  • development of ZEV infrastructure—from light to heavy-duty vehicles and big rigs,
  • creation of walkable communities where feasible, as well as other Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT) reduction strategies, such as compact infill development near job centers,
  • inclusion of disadvantaged communities in project selection processes, resulting in certain projects benefitting these disproportionately-harmed residents,
  • protection of Natural and Working Lands—as well as supporting biodiversity, including pollinators, via conservation.

To date, the vast majority of California transportation projects reflect outdated selection criteria—primarily the expansion of roadway capacity. AB 7 will ensure that in addition to addressing safety and maintenance improvements to existing systems, transportation decision-makers will be required to prioritize projects that will lead to meaningful carbon emission reductions, reduction of VMT, construction of compact infill housing developments, and improvement of overall system reliability and resilience—all while leveraging innovative clean energy systems, and conservation of Natural and Working Lands.

For all of these reasons, I strongly support AB 7 (Friedman) and respectfully request your “AYE” vote.

Thank you,

___________________

[Name]

A reminder about the legislative process: After bills pass their house of origin, they head to the other house where the process repeats—the bills go through the relevant committees, appropriations, and then the final floor votes.

Thank you for taking action today!

Nick Ratto, for the 350 Bay Area Action Legislative Committee

You can support the work of this dedicated team of volunteers here.


Photo by Florian Wehde on Unsplash

350 Contra Costa Action logo in orange, aqua and teal
Editorial Team

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