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U.S. DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION, Office of the Secretary, Office of Public Affairs, Washington, DC 20590

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, May 18, 2000
Contact: Virginia Miller
Tel.: 202-366-0660
FHWA 33-00

Top U.S. Highway Official Commends NESEA for Contribution to Cleaner Air

Federal Highway Administrator Kenneth R. Wykle today commended the Northeast Sustainable Energy Association (NESEA) for its contribution to clean air by showcasing environmentally friendly vehicles from universities, entrepreneurs and automakers. Wykle participated in the finish line ceremony of the Tour de Sol, an annual road- rally sponsored by NESEA and featuring solar, electric and hybrid electric vehicles.

"As each car in this competition shows, mobility and clean air are not a contradiction," Wykle said. "Protecting the environment is an important goal of the Federal Highway Administration, and we are continuously seeking innovative ways to meet U.S. Transporation Secretary Rodney E. Slater's challenge for us to further improve our nation's air quality."

FHWA, an agency of the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), has set a national goal to reduce vehicle emissions by 20 percent in the next seven years.

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), along with the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), is a cofounder of "It All Adds Up to Cleaner Air," a national initiative to educate the public about the environmental, health and traffic impacts of their transportation choices. Under this initiative, the federal agencies established the Alliance for Clean Air and Transportation, a public/private coalition which comprises a wide variety of partners including companies and organizations from the automotive, transit, environmental, and health fields. The Alliance is a sponsor of this year's Tour de Sol.

Wykle urged motorists to take personal responsibility for protecting the environment by adopting the following three steps:

  • Maintain your car in top running condition. Well maintained vehicles run cleaner.
  • Combine errands. Combining errands into a single car trip reduces air pollution by decreasing traffic congestion and the number of "cold starts."
  • Choose alternate modes of transportation. Carpooling, mass transit, bicycling and walking all serve to help reduce traffic congestion and air pollution.

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