Alternet:Transit Justice Providing Service and Shipping out Greenhouse Gases

How one group aims to increase public transportation especially for those most in need.

alternet.jpgThis article is part of series on Alternet called: Facing the Climate Gap , which looks at grassroots efforts in California low-income communities of color to address climate change and promote climate justice.

While traffic officials are wondering how best to get Angelenos out of their cars for just one day, the Bus Riders Union (BRU) is looking to boost public transit throughout the year by improving the conditions of public transportation for those low-income residents who have little choice about transit in the first place. By doing so, BRU is addressing fundamental transit equity issues- and getting drivers out of their cars on a more regular basis.  

For example, the BRU is currently in the midst of its Clean Air, Clean Buses, Clean Lungs Campaign , which was started in 2005. It aims to reduce car use in Los Angeles by half, double the MTA's fleet, ban highway expansion and create bus-only lanes and pedestrian friendly zones throughout the city.

But as BRU Senior Organizer Sunyoung Yang points out, Angelinos with lower-incomes are less likely to have cars, more likely to be dependent on public transit, and therefore less responsible for greenhouse gas emissions. Encouraging this kind of good transit behavior would seem to make economic and environmental sense.  

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