In a federal void, the need for local solutions
The context that framed our Advocacy Advance report on bicycling and Climate Action Plans (PDF) was that strong federal action on climate change was not forthcoming and, as a result, states, cities, and universities were left to take action to reduce Greenhouse Gas emissions. The logical extension of that was that bicycling advocates would need to work with their own states, cities, and campuses to position bicycling as part of the solution. The report recommended providing funding and bicycle-friendly policies to make it easier to replace car trips with clean trips.
Some people may wonder why local action is needed. Why can’t the federal government act? After all, to be effective, action needs to be coordinated and comprehensive. For those interested in the messy details of legislative sausage-making and why the negotiations over the once-promising “tri-partisan” energy bill proposed by Senators Kerry (D), Lieberman (I), and Graham (R) collapsed, the New Yorker has a published a thorough chronicle of the process. Like most New Yorker articles, this one’s a long one, so get comfortable.