Clean and Efficient Transportation

Greenhouse Gas Reductions

Clean and Efficient Transportation

The Clean and Efficient Transportation strategy of the Climate Action Plan (CAP) leverages smart land use planning and other initiatives to encourage people to take transit, carpool, walk, or bike rather than drive alone. This strategy also includes initiatives meant to boost the use of electric and alternative fueled vehicles when driving is necessary. Achieving greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reductions from this strategy involves coordination with, and participation from, local and regional transportation and planning agencies as well as residents and businesses.

Implementation of the Clean and Efficient Transportation strategy is estimated to reduce the City’s GHG emissions 4,500 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (MTCO2e) by 2020 and 5,900 MTCO2e by 2030. Explore the sections below to learn about the City’s planned and ongoing actions to achieve these greenhouse gas emissions reductions.

Reduce VMT

Reduce Vehicle Miles Traveled

Vehicle miles traveled (VMT) data show how much people are driving in a given timeframe. We can reduce our community’s VMT by choosing transportation options like walking, biking, taking the bus and carpooling to reduce the number of miles we drive alone. In 2012, the total VMT in Encinitas was 1.4 million miles per day which equates to 538 million miles traveled in that year. The City’s CAP identified two actions to reduce VMT:

  1. Complete and implement a citywide Active Transportation Plan
  2. Organize a local shuttle system

UNIT
Vehicle miles traveled (VMT) is a measurement that estimates the total amount of miles vehicles within a certain area travel in a given period of time. The City measures VMT for Encinitas annually.
VMTVehicle Miles Traveled

Reduce Vehicle Miles Traveled

Citywide Active Transportation Plan

The City's Climate Action Plan (CAP) established a goal of completing and implementing a citywide Active Transportation Plan (ATP). An Active Transportation Plan addresses local and regional bike and pedestrian travel by establishing proposed biking and walking facilities and improvements to multi-modal connections to public transit.

The City completed and adopted its Active Transportation Plan on August 22, 2018. Implementation of the cost-effective projects has been initiated and major projects will be incorporated into the City’s Capital Improvement Plan based on project priority.  Since the Active Transportation Plan is complete, the CAP is in the process of being updated to include targets to reduce vehicle miles traveled, encourage mode shift, and cut greenhouse gas emissions. Completion of the bicycle and pedestrian projects mentioned in the ATP will reduce emissions by an estimated 254 MTCO2e.

Citywide Active Transportation Plan

Bike Facilities

In 2019, the City installed 4 miles of new bike lanes. Since 2012, the City has installed 38 miles of bike lanes. Major bike facility improvement projects include a 1.3-mile segment of the Coastal Rail Trail (Class I) along the railroad between Santa Fe Drive to Chesterfield in 2019, 0.4 miles of buffered bike lanes (Class II) in both directions along Piraeus Street from Skyloft Road to Plato Place in 2019 (with segments connecting La Costa Avenue to Leucadia Boulevard completed in 2020), and 0.3 miles of buffered bike lines along Requeza Street from the I-5 to Westlake Street.

* In 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2018 (indicated on the chart), the City did not track data on bike facility improvements. Although not represented in this chart, bike facility improvement projects were completed during these years. Moving forward, City staff has established a process to track bike facility installation for CAP reporting purposes.  

Reduce Vehicle Miles Traveled

Citywide Active Transportation Plan

In 2019, the City installed 2.75 miles of pedestrian facilities including sidewalks, trails, and crosswalks. Since 2012, the City has installed close to 18 miles of pedestrian facilities. Two notable pedestrian projects completed in 2019 include a half-mile walkway along La Costa Avenue from 101 to I-5 and a 1.3-mile pedestrian walkway on Neptune Avenue. Other notable pedestrian improvements include the addition of four crosswalks, two on San Elijo Avenue at Montgomery Avenue and Liverpool Drive, one at Vulcan Avenue and F Street, and one at Capri Road and Burgundy Drive.

In 2019, the City installed 2.75 miles of pedestrian facilities including sidewalks, trails, and crosswalks. Since 2012, the City has installed close to 18 miles of pedestrian facilities. Two notable pedestrian projects completed in 2019 include a half-mile walkway along La Costa Avenue from 101 to I-5 and a 1.3-mile pedestrian walkway on Neptune Avenue. Other notable pedestrian improvements include the addition of four crosswalks, two on San Elijo Avenue at Montgomery Avenue and Liverpool Drive, one at Vulcan Avenue and F Street, and one at Capri Road and Burgundy Drive.

Reduce Vehicle Miles Traveled

Local Shuttle System

The City’s CAP estimated that adding new local transit options could save an estimated 365,000 vehicle miles traveled in 2020, and 875,000 vehicle miles traveled in 2030.  This would result in an estimated greenhouse gas emissions reduction of approximately 100 MTCO2e and 200 MTCO2e, respectively. 

In 2014, the City completed a Transit Feasibility Study that recommended implementing new local transit routes to serve the Highway 101 corridor, education facilities in the city, and the Encinitas COASTER station.  The City is currently exploring potentially viable public transit options, including rideshare programs that may be served by neighborhood electric vehicles.

Opportunity for outside funding is currently being explored and costs for a local shuttle system will be considered in a future City budget. 

Goal 4.2: Reduce On-Road Fuel Use

Reduce On-Road Fuel Use

Vehicle fuel usage is another way to measure how transportation impacts the climate. Reducing road congestion and improving traffic flow can lead to reductions in vehicle fuel use and greenhouse gas emissions. The City’s Climate Action Plan (CAP) identified two ways to reduce fuels use: retiming traffic signals and installing roundabouts. Efficient signal timing and roundabouts reduce vehicle stops and starts, improve vehicle stacking time, and reduce idle time, collectively contributing to reduced fuel use and reduced greenhouse gas emissions.

By 2020, the CAP aims to retime 60 traffic signals and install three roundabouts. By 2030, the CAP proposes the installation of an additional four roundabouts to improve traffic flow. This would reduce greenhouse gas emissions by approximately 3,700 MTCO2e and 2,800 MTCO2e, respectively.

Designs are currently in development for four new roundabouts along North Coast Highway 101. For more information on these roundabouts, visit the Leucadia Streetscape project webpage by following this link. 

Designs were completed for one roundabout at Leucadia Blvd and Hygeia Ave and construction is planned to begin in the fall of 2020. A citywide traffic retiming study is also underway and will focus on improving traffic flow through the City’s primary arterial corridors by adjusting traffic light timing. In early 2019, the City secured a grant to add a series of signal modifications that will reduce delay times and improve traffic efficiency.


  

Increase Use of Alternative Fuels

Use Electric Vehicles

Vehicles that run on electricity produce fewer emissions than vehicles that run on gasoline or diesel. By supporting a network of electric vehicle charging stations (EVCS), the City can help facilitate the switch to vehicles that run on electricity. As our electricity supply becomes cleaner, so will electric vehicles.  The City’s CAP identified two actions to promote the adoption of electric vehicles:

  1. Require new single-family homes to be “EV Ready” and new multi-family developments to include EV charging stations
  2. Require new and remodeled commercial developments to install EV charging stations

  

Increase Use of Alternative Fuels

To increase electric vehicle (EV) adoption by residents, the City’s Climate Action Plan (CAP) proposed enacting local building codes that will require new single-family homes to install electrical equipment capable of handling an EV charger, making the home “EV Ready,” and new multi-family homes to install EV charging stations (EVCS) at 15% of the parking spaces in the complex. In November 2019, City Council considered and adopted an ordinance enacting these new regulations, effective January 1, 2020.

Electric Vehicle Charging Ordinance Fact Sheet

As a result of these new codes, the CAP estimates that 65 EVCS will be installed by 2020 and 370 EVCS will be installed by 2030 at new residential developments. Meeting these goals will decrease greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by approximately 200 MTCO2e by 2020 and 250 MTCO2e by 2030. Now that the ordinance is in place, staff with begin tracking the City’s progress towards these targets.

Prior to the passing of the ordinance, some homeowners voluntarily installed electric vehicle charging stations at homes throughout Encinitas. According to building permit data, 161 EVCS were installed at residential properties from 2012 to 2019.

Increase Use of Alternative Fuels

Use of Alternative Fuels

To increase electric vehicle (EV) adoption by residents, the City’s Climate Action Plan (CAP) proposed enacting local building codes requiring the installation of EV charging stations at 8% of the total number of parking spaces at commercial developments.  This new requirement would apply to all new commercial developments (including the commercial portion of mixed-use projects) and commercial building modifications, alterations, and additions that are 10,000 square feet or greater. In November 2019, City Council considered and adopted an ordinance enacting these new regulations, effective January 1, 2020.

As a result of these new codes, the CAP estimates that 150 EVCS will be installed by 2020 and 490 EVCS will be installed by 2030 at new commercial developments. Meeting these goals will decrease greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by approximately 440 MTCO2e by 2020 and 3,500 MTCO2e by 2030. Now that the ordinance is in place, staff with begin tracking the City’s progress towards these targets.

Many publicly available EV charging stations have already been installed at commercial properties in Encinitas.  Follow this link to see an online map showing station locations or download one of these useful smart phone apps to find out where to charge your EV: ChargePoint (iOS or Google Play Store) or PlugShare (iOS or Google Play Store).

Zero Emission Municipal Fleet

Transition to Zero Emission Municipal Fleet

The City’s Climate Action Plan set a goal of transitioning the City’s municipal fleet to “zero emission” or alternative fuels by 2030.  Examples of zero emission vehicles (ZEVs) include battery electric vehicles and fuel cell vehicles. Other low-emission vehicles like hybrids, plug-in hybrids, and compressed natural gas vehicles also contribute to reduced greenhouse gas emissions.  

In February 2018, the City drafted a ZEV Fleet Conversion Plan to achieve the CAP goal. According to the plan, the City will convert all light-duty vehicles to electric vehicles and all heavy-duty vehicles to renewable diesel.  The City’s CAP estimated that this action would reduce fleet fuel use by 10% by 2020 and 30% by 2030 and reduce GHG emissions by 55 MTCO2e and 380 MTCO2e, respectively.

UNIT
Vehicle fleets burn gallons of fossil fuels (gasoline and diesel) to run, which emit greenhouse gases.
galGallons of Fuel

  

Transition to Zero Emission Municipal Fleet

In 2019, the City’s municipal fleet included 2 battery-electric vehicles, 1 plug-in hybrid, and 12 hybrid vehicles, with 15 clean fleet vehicles in total. EVs make up almost 30 percent of the light duty fleet--the portion of the fleet that may have EV alternatives available in the market. In accordance with the ZEV Fleet Conversion Plan, City vehicles are annually evaluated and vehicle replacements are budgeted and scheduled as needed. Whenever possible, EVs are selected as replacement vehicles in the light-duty class.

The City also tracks fleet gasoline use and since 2012 there has been a 37% decrease in gasoline use.  In 2018, to support the transition to electric vehicles, the City installed 10 electric vehicle charging stations at the Public Works Yard through SDG&E’s Power Your Drive program.  More charging stations are planned for installation at City Hall, the Community & Senior Center, and the library.  Concurrently, the City is conducting a fleet assessment to evaluate vehicle use and right-size the fleet based on department need.

Transition to Zero Emission Municipal Fleet

In November 2018, the City began receiving deliveries of renewable diesel fuel for municipal fleet use. Renewable diesel is made from products that would otherwise be wasted, such as natural fats, vegetable oils and greases, as opposed to conventional diesel which is derived from extracted petroleum. Renewable diesel is chemically similar to conventional diesel but generates fewer emissions and other harmful substances when burned.

All City fleet diesel-fueled vehicles, including pickups, dump trucks, fire trucks and stationary generators, now fuel up on renewable diesel. The City tracks diesel use and, since 2012, there has been a 99% percent decrease in use of conventional diesel fuel, mainly due to an increase in use of renewable diesel. The City’s overall diesel consumption has increased by 15% since 2012.

Choose Clean and Efficient Transportation

The City of Encinitas needs everyone’s help to achieve our Climate Action Plan goals. Here’s how you can help:


Choose an alternative to driving alone - take transit, carpool or bike.

Explore iCommute Services.
Ask a friend or co-worker to carpool and meet at a local Park & Ride location to commute together.

Find a Park & Ride Location
Commit to biking to work by using the San Diego Regional Bike Map

Chart Your Route