Sustainability is an ODOT priority that guides our decision-making. Our managers and section crews routinely look for ways to utilize sustainable products and fuels, reduce energy and water consumption, reuse and recycle materials and equipment. Sustainable practices are also incorporated into how ODOT plans, designs and builds transportation programs and projects. Agency actions have increased efficiencies, lowered costs, and lessened the impact on the environment.
The Sustainability Program works to reduce the Agency’s operational greenhouse gas emissions. The
Sustainability Plan is a guiding document that challenges staff to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from agency operations among many other metrics. Each year, an annual Sustainability Progress Report is published to share where improvements have been made as well as shortcomings (the most recent annual reports are provided below). Program staff also routinely collaborate with other divisions to instill an environmental ethos throughout the agency. Such actions come in the form of sharing success stories, identifying opportunities for improvement as well as project management or consultation.
What We're Working On
Lead by the Sustainability Program, ODOT recently completed a multi-year
greenhouse gas (GHG) inventory
to better understand the agency’s operations and maintenance GHG emissions. The project was initiated in response to the agency’s
Strategic Action Plan (SAP)
. The final report recommends specific actions for ODOT to consider in order to reduce the agency’s operational carbon footprint (a SAP implementing action).
The Sustainability Program also recently partnered with the Oregon Sustainability Board
and the State of Oregon’s
Department of Administrative Services
on a Climate Action Toolkit to help other agencies set GHG emission reduction goals and identify actions to achieve those goals. As one of the state agencies with the largest carbon footprints, it is important for ODOT to blaze a trail on emission-reducing projects like this so other state agencies with less resources can benefit.
The Sustainability Program will focus on the following in 2022:
- Updating ODOT’s Sustainability Plan
- The latest version of the Sustainability Plan (Volume II) was published six years ago. Updating the plan will allow the agency to reassess priorities and focus efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions across internal operations.
- Implementing recommendations from the GHG inventory report.
ODOT is in the process of considering over 40 recommendations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from maintenance and construction operations. Examples include: increase use of renewable diesel, renewable electricity purchases, and maximizing use of alternative cements. ODOT will begin creating work plans based on the recommendations, staffing bandwidth, available funding and market supply.