The ODOT Climate Office mission is to identify and pursue actions that reduce transportation greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The office is also charged with helping the agency understand, prepare and respond to the impacts of climate change and extreme weather. The Climate Office leads ODOT’s effort to track and follow the strategies outlined in the Statewide Transportation Strategy (STS): A 2050 Vision for Greenhouse Gas Reduction,
and fulfill the Executive Order to reduce GHG emissions in Oregon.
Why do we need a climate office?
In Oregon, about 35 percent of total GHG emissions come from transportation. Because emissions are one of the biggest contributors to climate change, ODOT plays an important leadership role in reducing GHG output.
Oregon’s climate is already changing. More frequent and intense wildfires, floods, landslides, heat waves, winter storms and other extreme weather events across the state are challenging our transportation system. ODOT is taking action by reducing GHGs from transportation, and by making important changes to the system that enhance preparation, response and recovery from these events.
What does the Climate Office do?
The Climate Office is responsible for integrating climate considerations into ODOT business and transportation systems. The office works across ODOT Divisions, with other state agencies, local jurisdictions, and the public in this work. Mitigation work focuses on reducing GHG emissions from transportation, including transportation electrification and implementing State directives. Adaptation work focuses on preparing for and responding to the impacts of climate change to transportation infrastructure. The office’s Sustainability Program conserves resources, such as materials and fuels used in ODOT business and operations, and includes efforts like the Oregon Solar Highways Program. The Climate Office also supports legislative and Governor’s Office directives on climate change mitigation, adaptation or sustainability.
Addressing Climate Change is an Agency-Wide Effort
Reducing greenhouse gas emissions and preparing for the effects of climate change is an “all hands on deck” effort at ODOT. Every discipline and division make contributions that are guided by the strategic priorities set by the agency
. These elevate ODOT’s commitment to sustainable transportation investments that are more socially equitable and climate-friendly for the benefit all.