Sustainable Transportation

Sustainable transportation supports the mobility needs of society in a safe, efficient and equitable manner- consistent with human and ecosystem health. About 50% of a typical two-car household’s carbon emissions are from transportation sources. Consumers should purchase a fuel-efficient, low-polluting car, keep their vehicle well maintained, and adopt good driving habits including observing the speed limit and consolidating trips. Use of mass transit, ride-sharing, biking, walking and telecommuting offer further opportunities to reduce transportation emissions.

Electric vehicles (EVs) represent a rapidly accelerating share of the automobile market. As EV technologies improve (already 4-5 times more efficient than that of a gasoline car), and with an expanding range of affordable models EVs are poised to become a mainstream family car. EVs will play an increasingly prominent role in reducing transportation emissions. . Both on the personal and municipal fronts, electrifying the town’s vehicles is an exciting and achievable prospect.

Achievements to Date

  • First town-owned EV obtained in 2015
  • Annual EV Showcase since 2015 (now the Green Wheels Expo); largest such event in the Northeast US
  • Over 40 EV chargers in town
  • About 400 EVs registered in town
  • Propane equipment used for town landscaping
  • “Introduction to EVs” course offered through Fairfield Continuing Ed and Fairfield Public Library
  • Anti-idling signage at schools to reduce exposure to exhaust fumes
  • Exhaust deflector shields on buses
  • Procurement of electric school buses in progress
  • Establishment of bike paths and shared lane markings

Challenges Ahead

  • Providing charging infrastructure for residents who cannot charge at home
  • Locating and capitalizing EV charging projects, as a Town project or in partnership with third parties
  • The electric grid will need to significantly increase its generating capacity to accommodate growth of EV adoption.
  • Making the case for electric school buses and municipal EV fleets

Benefits of sustainable transportation

  • Reducing greenhouse gas emissions, which contribute to climate change
  • Improving air quality and public health by reduction of toxic emissions from burning fossil fuels
  • Improving energy stability and security
  • Saving money on transportation costs
Level 2 EV charging station at Sherman Green installed in 2012

2030 Plan Goals*

  • Five town-owned EVs, replacing older fleet vehicles
  • Large banks of EV chargers to address need for renters (also encourage and/or require multi-family housing units to install EV chargers)
  • 1200 EVs registered in Fairfield
  • Establish car and bicycle sharing services in Fairfield
  • Start replacing diesel school buses with electric buses (10 by 2025)
  • Support state efforts for mass transit, transit-oriented development (TOD), and ridesharing
  • Support Transportation & Climate Initiative for long term, regional effort
  • Formally oppose state efforts to widen I-95 for capacity reasons

*Some goals are ambitious, and may need more time to achieve target participation rates; others can be achieved sooner, but work on all goals should begin as soon as possible

Long Term Goals

  • 100% of transportation from sustainable sources by 2050
  • Reduce overall vehicular traffic via mass transit, biking, and walking

How Do We Reach Our Goals?

  • Leverage federal and state incentives for sustainable transportation
  • Add EV chargers to solar projects and building renovations
  • Continue to advocate for electric school buses and town-owned EVs
  • Continue EV outreach and education, especially via Green Wheels Expo 
  • Communicate with state and federal legislators about transportation issues
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Town of Fairfield Clean Energy Action Plan  
Reducing Personal Transportation Emissions
Gas Saving Tips
Commuting Alternatives (CTRides)
EV Connecticut Resources & Incentives
Anti-Idling
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