SB 743 (LOS to VMT Transition)

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Heavy traffic on the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge.
Credit
Peter Beeler

To fight greenhouse gas emissions, Senate Bill No. 743 (SB 743) is working to reduce the amount of driving.

Transportation — and particularly passenger cars — is responsible for 40% of all greenhouse gas emissions in the Bay Area.

To address these air quality impacts, SB 743 updates the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) to prioritize development and transportation projects that get people out of individual cars and into sustainable modes of transportation to reduce the amount of air pollution from cars.

Vehicle Miles Traveled

SB 743, which took effect July 1, 2020, helps reduce transportation’s impacts on the environment.

Before July 1, 2020, traffic congestion levels (known as level of service, or LOS) were the main measurement to determine the negative environmental impacts of development and transportation projects.

Under SB 743, these effects are now measured according to the overall amount that people drive (known as vehicle miles traveled, or VMT).

VMT is calculated as part of a building or transportation project’s CEQA environmental review process.