Climate

Oppressive Smoke Casts Thoughts To Clean-Burning Transit

By Mark Prado
Smoky skies
Smoky skies envelop the Bay Bridge, Friday, Nov. 16. Mark Prado photo.

The terrible air brought on by the tragic fires to the north reminds us how precious good air quality is. Transportation agencies around the Bay Area are working to employ cleaner burning technologies to power buses, ferries and trains.

Some examples:

Caltrain is working toward electrification of its system. The project will electrify the corridor from San Francisco to San Jose and will replace 75 percent of Caltrain’s diesel service with electric power that is cleaner and greener.

The Bay Area will have the first hydrogen cell-powered ferry, which will be used by the Red And White Fleet.

Last month, Marin Transit rolled out a pair of new electric-powered buses. The buses, which can seat 32 passengers, charge overnight and are operated on Marin Transit local routes by Golden Gate Transit.    

MTC also has a Climate Initiative Program aimed at reducing emissions and the agency has taken a deeper dive on the issue in a Vital Signs report.