A policy brief released by Duke University in June 2011 reveals that spending is not correlated to a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. “Spending up to $53 billion per year changes cumulative emissions over 10 years by less than 0.3%.” Transportation spending levels do not significantly affect the amount of CO2 emissions and there are better policy alternatives. For instance, more stringent fuel efficiency standards, policies that advocate less frivolous travel, and long-term modifications to how we construct roadways and communities can shift emissions to an acceptable level.
Construction and maintenance activities can be impacted by spending levels, but do not impact transportation emissions in a meaningful way, as they only comprise 0.7% total to begin with.
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