Monday, March 06, 2006

Oregon Transportation Plan

The Oregon Department of Transportation has just finished its public review period for the draft state transportation plan for the next 20 years. This document discusses the state’s vision for the future of transportation in Oregon, laying out goals and policies for transportation planning in this state. Perhaps unique for a government agency, this document discusses Peak Oil as one of the challenges that transportation planner will face over the next three decades.

I touched on this subject
earlier, but here again is ODOT’s take on Peak Oil:

In 2003 the United States consumed almost 20 million barrels of oil per day; transportation used two-thirds of this total. But the world’s supply of oil is finite and demand is rising worldwide. Although experts disagree about when world oil production will peak, even the most optimistic forecasts suggest that it will occur in less than 25 years. Disruptions to the world’s oil supply will likely lead to increasing fuel prices and create economic disruption worldwide.

Well, I took the time to read through the rest of the document and drafted an eleven page response of my own. I officially submitted this to state transportation planners just before the conclusion of the official comment period.

By and large I found a document that started out on the right track (by acknowledging peak oil) but failed to completely acknowledge fully the resulting impacts it would have on all matters related to transportation.

Case in point: Traffic congestion is still seen as the biggest problem in the “meat” of the document, where all of the planning elements are.

If you are interested in reading my full response
click here for the word document or here for a straight text version.

The complete state plan can be read
here.

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