Steva, Erin

Erin Steva is a Transportation Advocate for CALPIRG, a non-profit advocacy organization that takes on powerful interests on behalf of Californians, working to win concrete results for our health and our well-being.

As California Vies for New High-Speed Rail Funding, New Report Highlights What’s in Store

Erin Steva

High-speed rail is finally on the move.

For decades, America has been falling behind the rest of the world’s rail systems, but we took a big step forward when Congress allocated $8 billion towards high-speed rail in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. On Monday, the U.S. Department of Transportation requested state applications for $2.3 billion in high-speed rail money it will award this year. Although these funds pale in comparison to the $100 billion China will spend on high-speed rail this year alone, the funds will allow California’s system to move forward.

As California nears the construction of fast trains, the state has much to learn from experiences abroad. The CALPIRG Education Fund just released a new research report, Next Stop: California. The report examines high-speed rail lines in operation for decades in Asia and Europe, outlines the benefits California can expect, and makes policy recommendations on how the state can maximize the benefits of its investment.