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Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) Improvement Program

CMAQ

Georgia DOT is responsible for the administration of the CMAQ program in the State of Georgia. The CMAQ program is a federally funded program authorized under the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST Act) as part of § 1114; 23 U.S.C. 149. Georgia is eligible to receive CMAQ funds due to violations of the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for ozone and Particular Matter (PM) 2.5. GDOT is responsible for distributing the funds to the nonattainment MPOs through the CMAQ distribution formula, verifying projects selected meet the CMAQ requirements outlined in the Interim Program Guidance dated November 12, 2013, and submitting the CMAQ Report to FHWA on an annual basis.

 CMAQ Formula

The CMAQ Formula was developed in consultation with the nonattainment MPOs and approved by FHWA. First, 50% of Georgia’s CMAQ Apportionment which is not dedicated to the mandatory PM 2.5 set‐aside is transferred into Z240 funds. The CMAQ Formula is then broken into two categories: Statewide and MPOs. The Statewide funding is subtracted from the whole amount of apportioned CMAQ funds. The Statewide category includes the ongoing education under the Georgia Commute Options Program. The MPO category represents the majority of the funding and is available for CMAQ eligible projects within the MPO nonattainment areas. Please view the Detailed CMAQ Distribution Formula outlining Georgia’s funding distribution process.

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 CMAQ Selection Process

The CMAQ Project Selection Process is incorporated into the affected Metropolitan Planning Organization’s (MPO) federally approved Planning Process. GDOT works with the nonattainment MPO to select projects that, at a minimum, meet the CMAQ requirements outlined in FHWA’s Interim Program Guidance document. GDOT and the MPO also weigh the merits and the benefits of the specific projects and how they fit into the MPO’s regional transportation and air quality planning. GDOT also allows the smaller nonattainment MPOs to build up their annual apportionments of CMAQ funding to fund larger projects, on a caseby‐ case basis. In the past, GDOT and the MPOs used a project Cost Effectiveness Table and the project’s specific emissions reduction analysis to assist in selecting projects. The Cost Effectiveness table was developed using Section 4. Project Analysis and Selection Practices that Support Effectiveness of FHWA’s SAFETEA‐LU Evaluation and Assessment Phase 1 document. The Cost Effectiveness Table allowed us to normalize the cost of the projects and then rank the project by cost effectiveness and air quality benefit. Moving forward, GDOT will continue to incorporate the CMAQ selection into the Planning Process and work with the MPOs to select projects that will have a positive impact on air quality and congestion. The positive impacts will be captured on future CMAQ Performance Management Measure Reports and the Annual CMAQ Reports submitted to FHWA.

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 Coordination With Air Agency & FHWA

In accordance with the CMAQ Program Guidance listed above, GDOT consults with the Environmental Protection Division (EPD) of the Department of Natural Resources prior to selecting the final list of projects. GDOT and the MPO consider any comments received from the EPD when selecting the final list of projects to be recommended for funding. Once the “final” list of recommended projects has been selected, GDOT then reviews the list with FHWA’s Georgia Planning group to verify eligibility and to answer any questions they may have on specific projects. The eligible projects then move forward to be approved by the MPO Committees and start the programming process at GDOT.

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 Additional Information

  • National Ambient Air Quality Standards NAAQS
  • Commute Options
  • Tips to Reduce Smog

 

Air Quality

Transportation planning for areas designated as nonattainment for National Ambient Air Quality Standards NAAQS is accomplished by project assistance and funding from the Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program (CMAQ).

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Commute Options

Georgia Commute Options

​Georgia DOT is making every effort to keep traffic moving smoothly in our state, but delays are inevitable. You can manage your commute and reduce the number of vehicles on our roadways by exploring alternatives to driving during peak traffic hours. There is no better time to try commute options that will make getting to and from work easier.  The following is a list of alternative commute options that can help reduce the amount of smog produced by vehicle emissions.

Alternative Commute Options Description
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Instead of driving to meetings, schedule conference calls, use e-mail and fax to communicate with clients, co-workers, and vendors.


 
 


Georgia DOT is making every effort to keep traffic moving smoothly in our state, but delays are inevitable. You can manage your commute and reduce the number of vehicles on our roadways by exploring alternatives to driving during peak traffic hours. There is no better time to try commute options that will make getting to and from work easier.

Alternative Commute Options

The following is a list of alternative commute options that can help reduce the amount of smog produced by vehicle emissions.

  • Carpool or Vanpool: Call 1-87-RIDEFIND, or ask about your employer's carpooling programs.
  • Mass Transit: Commute to work utilizing the train or bus service in your community.
  • Telework: Work at home using your phone, fax, and computer.
  • Flex Hours: Adjust work schedule to commute when traffic is less congested.
  • Compressed Work Week: Work a four day work week made up of 10 hour days.
  • Ride a Bike: Adjust work schedule to commute when traffic is less congested.
  • Walk: Walk to work and to lunch if possible.
  • Use Technology: Instead of driving to meetings, schedule conference calls, use e-mail and fax to communicate with clients, co-workers, and vendors.
Reports Year
Air Quality Maps
Agency Government

Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program (CMAQ)

The CMAQ Program provides funding assistance to areas designated as non-attainment by the EPA. Areas failing to meet the NAAQS receive funds to invest in projects that decrease transportation-related air pollutants. The FHWA and FTA jointly administer this program to allocate funding to state DOTs and MPOs based upon the severity of congestion and population within the non-attainment areas. These funds are spent on specific transportation projects that decrease emissions and improve congestion.

CMAQ Call for Projects

State air quality agencies, along with local MPOs, select projects through an application process. Counties, municipalities, state agencies, and universities are permitted to submit applications. All applications are reviewed for eligibility as well as effectiveness on emissions reductions.


Tips to Reduce Smog

  • Don't Top Off: When pumping gas, don't overfill. This will prevent smog producing fumes from escaping into the air.
  • Late Start: Plan the use of gas-powered lawnmowers, blowers, edgers, chainsaws, and other motorized equipment for cooler evening hours. Refuel vehicles at dusk during cool hours.
  • Watch Your Temp: Set household thermostats at 78 degrees in summer and 68 degrees in winter.
  • Drive in Stride: Drive at a moderate speed; avoid quick take offs and stops.
  • Reduce Car Idling: Idling for extended periods at a drive-through or in traffic creates harmful pollutants. Park, and go inside.
  • Car Care: Get regular tune-ups, inflate tires properly, keep wheels aligned, and replace dirty air filters.
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