Top Congressional Republicans want to overturn a
A Congressional Review Act
The resolution seeks to overturn the Federal Highway Administration’s December 2023 rule mandating that state transportation departments and MPOs set declining emissions targets, a regulation that opposing states have said would affect their infrastructure investment decisions.
“When we negotiated the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, we specifically left out the authority FHWA is attempting to exercise with its greenhouse gas emissions performance measure requirement,” said Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W. Va., ranking member of the Environment and Public Works Committee, who introduced the resolution along with Sen. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D. “FHWA’s final rule limits the flexibility of states to advance their own transportation investment priorities, jeopardizing critical investments, jobs, and economic growth across the country.”
The rule, which took effect in January, requires state departments of transportation and metropolitan planning organizations to measure greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles and implement targets to reduce the emissions. The DOT said the rule would help meet Biden’s national goal achieving a 50% GHG emission reduction by 2030 and net-zero emissions by 2050. Transportation is the largest greenhouse gas contributor in the U.S., accounting for just under 30% of the country’s emissions in 2021,
State DOTs and MPOs are required to gather emissions data from vehicles into a single standard, and establish carbon emission targets that will be reviewed every two years. The rule requires the targets to decline over time but leave it to states and MPOs to set the actual targets and strategies for meeting them and does not include any penalties. The first targets were due by Feb. 1, 2024, which critics said was too short a deadline.
State DOTs are split in their support or opposition of the rule, according to the American Association of Highway Transportation Officials, which submitted a
In January, attorneys general from
Industry groups including the American Road & Transportation Builders Association, the Association General Contractors of America and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce also want the rule overturned, telling lawmakers in a Feb. 6 letter that it is “regulatory overreach” that “has the potential to limit improvements to our infrastructure.”