With gas prices climbing and Denver being one of the worst cities in the US for air pollution, Democratic lawmakers and Governor Jared Polis are prepared to roll out a program that will cost $28 million, aimed at easing air pollution in Colorado, particularly during summer months when ozone levels are high.
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Senate Bill 180 would allocate the money to let public transportation agencies, mainly the Regional Transportation District in the Denver area, offer free train and bus rides. RTD plans to use the money to offer free rides in August 2022 and continue into 2023.
The governor has hopes that people will form a habit of using the free system and will continue to use it when the time comes to pay for it. This would help the air quality of the city by reducing the amount of pollution emitted by individual cars.
Free RTD rides comes at an appealing time when gas prices are rising at an alarming rate, with no relief in sight. Perhaps this is the perfect time to roll out a program that is intended to combat air pollution, and in doing so, save the communities pockets and bank accounts as well.