Reports from ClimatePlan and partners
More Choices, Less Traffic: Achieving Greater Efficiency and Equity from California’s Transportation Investments
by Climate Resolve and ClimatePlan – June 2018
This report describes how transportation investments and land use patterns have contributed to California's congestion woes, and suggests an alternative path forward, centered on reducing driving, or vehicle miles traveled (VMT). This path will reduce traffic, improve mobility, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions — with many more "co-benefits" for community health, equity, and opportunity. The report recommends an intersectional, cross-jurisdictional, equity-enhancing approach for the most potential to improve people's lives.
Leading the Way: Policies and Practices for Sustainable Communities
by ClimatePlan – October 2016
Leading the Way presents the best strategies yet—“leading practices”—that regions around the state have used for public engagement, funding, planning land-use scenarios, and more, as they create Sustainable Communities Strategies. In addition to existing best practices, the report offers ways to go further. It provides inspiration and solutions that advocates and planners can use in their own communities.
(The photo above is from the report's release event.)
Toward A Sustainable Future: Is Southern California On Track?
by ClimatePlan and partners* – December 2015
The On Track report assesses Southern California's progress in the three years since it adopted its first Sustainable Communities Strategy in 2012, produced while the region was preparing its second plan. How are cities, counties, and towns in the state's most populous region acting together to improve land use and transportation planning and reduce greenhouse gases?
Download the report
*Partners: The Safe Routes to School National Partnership; American Lung Association in California; California Walks; Climate Resolve; Friends of Harbors, Beaches and Parks; Investing in Place; Move LA; Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC); Prevention Institute; and TransForm.
San Diego and SB 375: Lessons from California’s first Sustainable Communities Strategy
By Eliot Rose, Autumn Bernstein, and Stuart Cohen – 2011
The San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) approved the first Sustainable Communities Strategy (SCS) under Senate Bill 375 in October 2011. This report takes a comprehensive look at the plan and analyzes why it didn’t achieve the greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) reductions that many hoped it would. Download the report
Model Policies for Transportation and Climate:
Mapping and Planning for Public Health
The Public Health Alliance of Southern California is releasing the California Healthy Places Index (not yet live: see beta site), to map cumulative health advantage. The index maps social determinants of health: economic, social, political, and environmental factors that influence people's physical and cognitive function, behavior, and disease. The data is from publicly available sources, at a census tract level. Freely available online, to help communities and public and private agencies help prioritize investments, resources, and programs. PowerPoint introduction
City and Regional Planning for Parks, Open Space, and Agriculture
The Nature Conservancy, Trust for Public Land, and The Conservation Fund recently launched the Greenprint Resource Hub, a first-of-its-kind database for practitioners, policymakers, and community members looking to incorporate parks, open space, and agriculture into their economic and social goals. The database includes detailed case studies of how cities and surrounding regions have incorporated nature into city and regional planning, informing their decisions about how to grow and where to protect land to secure habitat, water, recreation, and food production.
2016 RTP Platform: Advancing Sustainable Equitable Regional Planning
ClimatePlan worked with Public Advocates, Safe Routes to School National Partnership, and California Pan-Ethnic Health Network to develop this policy platform, which includes ten detailed recommendations for the Regional Transportation Plan Guidelines in 2016. This policy platform is a great resource for any group working on an RTP update.
Download the platform
Social Equity Policies for SB 375 Targets
From 2010 - 2012, ClimatePlan partnered with Public Advocates and others to promote a socially equitable approach to SB 375 targets. This approach would analyze the potential beneficial and harmful impacts of targets and SCSs on lower income Californians and communities of color specifically, and select alternatives that maximize both GHG reduction and positive equity impacts while avoiding or offsetting any negative impacts.
SB 375 Health & Equity Metrics
This brief summary by Human Impact Partners, created in 2011, provides Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) with a set of metrics to promote health and equity as well as sustainability. For example, a plan selected using the indicator “Automobile Level of Service (LOS) on Roadways,” will prioritize making driving easier, despite the many ways driving harms health; instead, using “Premature Death due to Traffic-Related Pollution” will be more likely to reduce pollution by promoting alternate forms of transportation. Download 2-page summary
Additional reports from our partners
University of California Institute of Transportation Studies, 2017
Strong evidence exists that strategies across four categories – pricing, infill development, transportation investments, and travel demand management programs – can reduce vehicle miles of travel (VMT). This paper identifies state policies and programs that are implemented or being considered for each category of strategies, to help inform a framework for California.
Health Impact Assessment: California’s SB 375 and Its Impact on Fresno County’s Disadvantaged Unincorporated Communities and Low Income Urban Neighborhoods
Leadership Counsel for Justice and Accountability, 2017
This Health Impact Assessment (HIA) focuses on potential impacts of SB 375 implementation in four Fresno County communities, analyzes transit access across different scenarios in the region's Sustainable Community Strategy, and makes recommendations for the Fresno Council of Governments.
Race, Inequality, and the Resegregation of the Bay Area
Urban Habitat, 2016
This policy brief maps the regional transformation currently underway in the Bay Area and its implications for low-income communities and communities of color. Low-income communities and communities of color are increasingly living at the expanding edges of the region, struggling to find good jobs, schools, and services; in the core, housing and other costs grow ever higher.
Social Equity in Transportation Planning
Richard Marcantonio and Alex Karner, 2016
This paper critiques the framework currently used by metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs) to assess equity in long-range regional transportation plans, which treats those residents as bystanders, and does not actually make needed change. Instead, the authors propose asking first, "What are the most pressing unmet needs of particular underserved communities?"
Seizing the Power of Public Participation
Richard Marcantonio and Sam Tepperman Gelfant, 2016
In this article, the authors contend that successful public engagement is rarely due to the initiative of public agencies, but instead
relies on residents coming together powerfully to influence decisions that affect them. Based on recent campaigns, they recommend three strategies for success in using public participation requirements to build power and win concrete outcomes.
Sustainable Communities and Conservation
The Nature Conservancy, 2016
This report surveys conservation measures in existing Sustainable Communities Strategies around the state, along with conservation-related proposals that were made but not adopted in each region. It offers a set of model policies and best practices for future SCSs, because conservation is an essential component of reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Planning for a Healthier Future
Transportation for America, 2016
This report summarizes current best practices in the development of health, equity and environmental measures that can be used to evaluate the performance of transportation investments at a regional scale.
Key Strategies to Advance Equitable Growth in Regions
This report draws from work in more than 40 cities and regions to connect low-income people and communities of color to the economic mainstream. It lifts up strategies concentrated in seven areas, all helping communities to plan for equitable growth, remove employment barriers, grow good jobs, and strengthen the education pipeline.
Regional Planning for Health Equity
This brief introduces strategies for planning for health equity at a regional scale, and summarizes the movement for building healthy communities. It draws from the experiences of regional equity coalitions and metropolitan planning organizations to identify five important conditions that must be met to achieve effective results.
Disadvantaged Communities Teach Regional Planners a Lesson in Equitable and Sustainable Development
Richard Marcantonio and Alex Karner, 2014
This article describes how San Francisco Bay Area advocates for affordable housing, public transit, public health and other social equity outcomes came together as the 6 Wins Network and won the adoption of a more equitable regional plan, which they demonstrated was better for the climate as well as for low-income communities.
A Regional Government Primer for Practitioners
Safe Routes to School National Partnership, 2013?
The 2012 federal transportation act, Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21), created new ways for Safe Routes to School programs to attract funding from metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs). This is a brief guide to understanding your MPO’s process and leveraging points can help you and your partners recognize new opportunities to fund walking and bicycling projects in your communities.
Creating Healthy Regional Transportation Plans
This guide reviews direct and indirect impacts of transportation on health, and how Sustainable Communities Strategies can improve health. It gives specific guidelines for Regional Transportation Plans on everything from bicycle/pedestrian improvements to promoting access for and participation by vulnerable communities, addresses challenges and roadblocks, and offers case studies of successful plans, projects and programs.
Southern California, Sacramento, and San Diego were the first three regions in America to adopt Sustainable Communities Strategies—transportation plans specifically designed to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. This report tells the story of how these regions tackled implementation of SB 375, and their unique challenges and successes.
Getting Involved in Transportation Planning: An Overview for Health Advocates
By Public Health Law and Policy and TransForm, 2011
This fact sheet discusses the important links between transportation planning and health, describes the key players and processes of local and regional transportation planning, and suggests steps to advocate effectively for healthier transportation policies.
SB 375: An Opportunity to Design Healthy, Sustainable Communities
ChangeLab Solutions, 2011
Groundbreaking legislation in California—SB 375—offers the chance to integrate health priorities into long-term planning efforts. This fact sheet provides an overview of the law and ways for public health advocates to get involved in the planning process.