December 17, 2021

Maureen McCarthy
(360) 788-9303

Whatcom Transportation Authority Signs “Sustainable Transit for a Healthy Planet” Challenge

Whatcom Transportation Authority recently became one of 170 U.S. transit agencies to sign the Federal Transit Administration’s (FTA’s) Sustainable Transit for a Healthy Planet Challenge.

The Sustainable Transit for a Healthy Planet Challenge encourages agencies to develop measurable climate action strategies to curb their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Participating agencies must document these strategies in a comprehensive plan, such as a Climate Action, Sustainability, or Electrification Plan, to be completed in 2022.

On December 16, 2021, WTA’s Board of Directors approved the agency’s 2022 budget. This budget includes Board authority for a new WTA staff position. The staff person in this position will be tasked with developing an agency-wide Sustainability Plan and with managing WTA’s ongoing sustainability programs.

WTA Board Chair and Bellingham City Council Member Michael Lilliquist said, “Here at WTA, we are committed to reducing our own fossil fuel pollution, as well as to helping our partners throughout Whatcom County. We’re pleased to join with other transit agencies around the country, in committing to specific actions to reduce harmful impacts on the air we breathe and the climate we depend upon.”

According to the FTA’s website, the challenge “encourages transit agencies to take bold actions and investments to cut GHG emissions,” for example converting fleets to zero-emissions buses and improving the energy efficiency of transit facilities.

WTA provides fixed route, paratransit, rural dial-a-ride, vanpool, and on-demand van service throughout Whatcom County. For route and schedule information, visit

        We acknowledge that Whatcom County is located on the unceded territory of the Coast Salish Peoples. They cared for the lands that included what we’d call the Puget Sound region, Vancouver Island and British Columbia since time immemorial. This gives us the great obligation and opportunity to learn how to care for our surrounding areas and all the natural and human resources we require to live. We express our deepest respect and gratitude for our indigenous neighbors, the Lummi Nation and Nooksack Tribe, for their enduring care and protection of our shared lands and waterways.
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