SACOG Releases Draft Proposed Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction Targets For Public Comment

On May 19, 2010, the Transportation Committee of the Sacramento Area Council of Governments (SACOG) released for public comment its draft of proposed greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets. This proposal is part of SACOG’s participation in a Senate Bill 375 target-setting process with the California Air Resources Board (CARB), Caltrans, and other metropolitan planning organizations in the State. SACOG proposes per capita reductions between 5 percent and 6 percent for 2020 and between 14 percent and 15 percent for 2035, as compared to a 2005 base year. SACOG’s Board of Directors will consider the draft reduction targets for approval in June 2010.

SACOG proposed these ranges as a balance between CARB’s directions to pursue “achievable” and “most ambitious” goals, in anticipation of CARB’s own release of regional targets for 2020 and 2035. In implementing SB 375, once CARB settles on these targets in September 2010, SACOG must prepare a Sustainable Community Strategy (SCS) that meets those targets for the Sacramento region. SACOG must further incorporate its SCS into the Metropolitan Transportation Plan for 2035 (MTP). While SB 375 contains provisions for streamlined review under CEQA, the new MTP/SCS will require some level of environmental analysis. Therefore, SACOG is also in the initial stages of preparing both an MTP/SCS and an attendant environmental impact report.

In preparing its May 19 proposal, SACOG evaluated seven greenhouse gas reduction options. SACOG has organized the draft reduction options into four “bundles”: land use measures, transportation system development, transportation system and demand management, and transportation pricing. The most basic reduction option is the current MTP. The other six options expand on the implementation of policies found in the adopted MTP, with the exception of Option 5, which would add significant new transportation pricing policies that are not currently included in the adopted MTP. A larger discussion of the policy options can be found on SACOG’s website at: