Governor Newsom Highlights Funding for Climate Change Resiliency Projects Across California

What you Need to Know:  The impacts of climate change pose a major risk to California’s transportation infrastructure. To better prepare for a changing climate and to improve safety, the state is funding 15 key projects to make our roadways more resilient to changing weather patterns. Key projects funded by this investment will:

  • Provide a second route for emergency evacuations in Paradise in the event of a natural disaster.
  • Elevate a road in the Coachella Valley to allow access to a hospital and other critical resources during floods and sandstorms.
  • Fortify rail-lines along California’s coast to ensure the safety of passengers and cargo transportation.

Sacramento – Today, Governor Gavin Newsom highlighted funding to strengthen California’s transportation infrastructure amid intensifying climate impacts. In recent years, Californians have experienced record temperatures, and intensifying storms, floods, and fires – damaging property and taking lives.

“California is at the forefront of the devastating impacts of climate change that are wiping entire towns off the map, destroying property, and putting communities in danger. These projects fund critical evacuation roads, preserve access to a regional hospital, and safeguard railways along our coastline to protect life and property throughout the state, among other benefits.” Governor Gavin Newsom

To better prepare California for future volatile weather conditions, through the California Transportation Commission, the state is investing over $300 million in 15 projects to make our transportation infrastructure more resilient to the effects of climate change.

“Climate change is impacting communities across California,” said Commission Chair Lee Ann Eager. “The Commission is grateful to Governor Newsom and the Legislature for making funding available for these critically needed improvements and ensuring our transportation system will be functional and safe for future generations.”

Since taking office, Governor Gavin Newsom has led the state’s response to devastating floods, fires and other disasters driven by climate change. In August of this year, the Governor met with communities across Southern California, including the Inland Empire and Desert communities as Tropical Storm Hilary made landfall, bringing damaging rain and winds – and highlighting the need to prioritize climate resiliency projects across the state.

Key projects supported by this funding include:

Coachella Valley:
This project will construct two bridges, elevating the height of a critical roadway that is susceptible to floods and sandstorms, both of which can obstruct the passage of vehicles. Additionally, this passage connects Palm Springs and Desert Hot Springs with access to a regional hospital.

This project provides an alternative route for emergency evacuations during a natural disaster for climate-vulnerable communities in the region. During the devastating Camp Fire, residents faced challenges evacuating because they had limited access to alternative routes, underscoring the need for this project.

Strengthening Rail-lines:
A seven-mile stretch of railroad tracks along California’s coast, which experiences frequent closures and service interruptions due to storm surge and coastal erosion, will be fortified to address climate-related impacts. This area between Dana Point and San Clemente provides a key transportation route in the region for both passengers and cargo.

A full list of approved projects can be found here.