Biden Clean Transit Plan Will Reduce Emissions, Save Lives in Frontline, Fenceline Communities

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Biden Administration’s plan to reduce emissions from public transit and school buses through investments from the bipartisan infrastructure law will help address one of the main drivers of premature death and illness in frontline and fenceline communities. The president’s plan will devote $1.1 billion from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and $372 million from the federal Bus and Bus Facilities program to replace buses with cleaner, U.S.-made models. 

"When we say, 'I can't breathe,' we literally can't breathe. Transportation is one of the main drivers of air pollution and particulates that threaten the health and well-being of frontline and fenceline communities, especially our children who are most vulnerable," said Mustafa Santiago Ali, vice president of environmental justice, climate, and community revitalization for the National Wildlife Federation. "This plan to clean up public transit and reduce emissions is an important step toward confronting this persistent driver of premature deaths and life-threatening illnesses in Black, Indigenous, Latinx, and others marginalized communities. This strategy will ultimately save lives and save on costs over the long run."

The vehicles impacted by this plan, including buses and heavy-duty trucks, account for roughly one-quarter of all U.S. transportation greenhouse gas emissions, and are the largest contributor of nitrogen oxides. These emissions disproportionately burden people of color and low-income households that live near highways, ports and other congested areas.

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