ClimatePlan's Top 10 Climate Bills: 2022 Legislative Priorities

We need swift legislation to drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to accelerate our plans in achieving a climate equitable society that promotes public health, equity, and a regenerative economy. Here are the top 10 legislative bills that ClimatePlan are tracking:

AB 2438 (Friedman) Align Transportation Investments with Climate Goals: (SUPPORT)

AB 2438 authored by Assemblymember Laura Friedman aims to get California on course to integrate its transportation planning and funding with the state’s ambitious climate goals. The bill would require some transportation programs to align with the California Transportation Plan (CTP), Climate Action Plan for Transportation Infrastructure (CAPTI), AB 32 (2006) and SB 375 (2008). The bill also hopes to create more coordination between state agencies and fiscal constraints on the CTP. Read more about why ClimatePlan co-sponsored AB 2438 here

AB 2237 (Friedman) Align Regional Plans with Climate Goals: (SUPPORT)  

AB 2237 authored by Assemblymember Laura Friedman will require the Strategic Growth Council (SGC) to work in consultation with California Air Resource Board (CARB), Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) and the Transportation Agency to convene a task force to review the roles and responsibilities of metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs) and to define “sustainable community”. Just like AB 2438, this bill incorporates findings from the AB 285 report and directs alignment of regional plans with California’s climate goals.

AB 1778-(Garcia) Outlaw Freeway Expansion through Environmental Justice Communities: (SUPPORT)

AB 1778 authored by Assemblymember Cristina Garcia will prohibit the state from funding or permitting transportation projects such as freeway expansions and widening in communities that disproportionately suffer from either toxic vehicle emissions or communities that have a high rate of poverty. A 2021 LA Times article unveiled how hundreds of thousands of people of color have been displaced due to highway expansions. This bill aims to prevent the historically harmful planning of the past by directing the California Department of Transportation to consult their projects by using the California Healthy Places Index to ensure that projects will not displace vulnerable low income, communities of color.

AB 2419- (Bryan) Justice40 Act: (SUPPORT)  

AB 2419 authored by Assemblymember Isaac Bryan ensures that federal climate and infrastructure investment will achieve California’s goals of advancing equity, environmental justice and economic development by requiring that a minimum 40% of the federal climate, clean energy and infrastructure funds benefit disadvantaged communities. An additional 10% of funds will be required to benefit low-income communities and households.  Historically, infrastructure funds have segregated communities of color, perpetuated social inequities - such as housing insecurity, economic inequities, and exposure to toxic pollution from vehicle emissions - and displaced them from achieving economic mobility. This bill seeks to prevent past poor planning by requiring investments made to those who were historically displaced and left out of economic prosperity.

AB 1919- (Holden) Fare-Free Youth Transit Passes: (SUPPORT)  

AB 1919 authored by Assemblymember Chris Holden will require transit agencies to offer free youth transit passes to Californians that are 25 years old and younger, regardless of immigration status. This bill would create a five-year pilot program that will help offset the costs to transit agencies. This bill will help decrease greenhouse gas emissions and improve quality public transit options by expanding transportation opportunities to the youth and encourage them to develop lifelong ridership habits. 

AB 1975- (Nazarin)- Bus Shelters and Street Furniture For Transit Riders: (SUPPORT)

AB 1975 authored by Assemblymember Adrin Nazarian will require local agencies that receive an application to site a bus shelter or other street furniture for the use of transit riders as a ministerial decision rather than a discretionary decision. This bill would include “bus and pedestrian shelter and street furniture” as a complete street component under the Road maintenance and Rehabilitation Program. If a city and county uses funds under Local Streets and Roads Program (LSRP) it would require them to complete the project within 40 days of receiving the funds.

SB 922 (Weiner)- California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) exemptions-Transportation Related Projects: (SUPPORT)  

SB 922 authored by Senator Scott Wiener will help local governments and transit agencies in building active transportation and sustainable transit projects by streamlining CEQA with targeted statutory exemptions for transit and active transportation projects that will significantly advance California’s climate, safety, and health goals, including projects that:

  •     Make streets safer for walking and biking;
  •     Speed up bus service on streets and improve on-time performance
  •     Construct infrastructure or facilities to refuel zero-emissions transit vehicles
  •     Expand carpooling
  •     Run faster bus service on highways
  •     Modernize and build new bus and light rail stations and terminals
  •     Support parking policies that reduce drive-alone trips and congestion
  •     Improve wayfinding for people using transit, biking or walking

AB 2076 (Rivas & Garcia) Extreme Heat and Community Resilience Program: (SUPPORT)

AB 2076 co-authored by Assemblymembers Luz Rivas & Cristina Garcia will protect communities from the rising threats of climate-change-fueled extreme heat waves by requiring an appointment of a Chief Heat Office to implement the program and establish the Interagency Heat taskforce. This bill would also require the development of a Comprehensive Heat Action Plan that establishes programs that are community driven. The bill will also require a robust heat Hospitalization and Death reporting system to track deaths caused by extreme heat waves, documenting the public health impact.  

AB 2147 (Ting) Freedom To Walk Act: (SUPPORT)

AB 2147 authored by Assemblymember Phil Ting will prohibit a police officer from stopping and citing a pedestrian for jaywalking. The bill aims to reduce the number of jaywalking citations as they disproportionately impact people of color. Data has shown that jaywalking citations don’t increase safety but rather perpetuate dangerous pretext to stop Black and Brown people.  

SB 1410 (Caballero): Transportation Impacts: (OPPOSE)

SB 1410 authored by Senator Anna Caballero will limit SB 743 requirements that mandate vehicle miles traveled (VMT)-based analysis on urban transportation priority areas. The analysis would only promote the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) and not VMT. This bill would invalidate the goals of SB 743. 

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