NEWS RELEASE: California High-Speed Rail Authority Releases 2023 Sustainability Report

October 31, 2023

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The California High-Speed Rail Authority (Authority) today released its annual Sustainability Report: Building California’s Sustainable Future. The report, part of the Authority’s commitment to transparency and accountability, details the progress the high-speed rail project has made on its environmental goals in the last year as it builds the biggest, greenest infrastructure project in the nation.

“Our whole project is focused on a better transportation future for California,” said Authority Director of Planning and Sustainability Margaret Cederoth. “We are focused not just on a sustainability outcome, but specific, measurable ways that demonstrate sustainable construction, design and delivery. We use cleaner construction practices, helping move the industry toward carbon neutrality. Our goal is to deliver meaningful benefits now for communities, even as we are building transformative transportation options.”

Key milestones highlighted in this year’s report include:

  • Maintaining a net-positive greenhouse gas (GHG) balance, offsetting more GHG emissions than the project had generated to date;
  • Continuing the restoration of more than 4,400 acres of habitat and protecting more than 3,190 acres of agricultural land;
  • Continuing a focus on cleaner equipment, which has resulted in 68% less black carbon than a typical construction site;
  • Reducing construction water usage by 12% despite a 38% increase in construction activity;
  • Diverting about 95% (302,961 tons) of all waste from landfills; this includes 118,381 tons recycled, 87,332 tons reused, 11,740 tons composted, and 85,508 tons stockpiled over the entire construction timeframe;
  • Providing $2 million in funding for urban tree planting in disadvantaged communities near the high-speed rail tracks.


The cover of the 2023 Sustainability Report: Building California's Sustainable Future

The 2023 Sustainability Report


The annual report details the Authority’s efforts from January 1 to December 31, 2022, as well as capturing some data from the first part of 2023.

California’s electrified high-speed rail will be powered by 100% renewable energy. The system will sustainably connect communities and give Californians an unprecedented alternative to driving. No mode of transportation delivers the speed and quality of trip at the same energy efficiency as high-speed rail.

A copy of the full 2023 Sustainability Report, including other resources such as fact sheets, can be found at

The Authority has begun advanced design work to extend the 119 miles under construction to 171 miles of future electrified high-speed rail from Merced to Bakersfield. The high-speed rail project has created more than 11,000 good-paying jobs since the start of construction, 70% of those going to Central Valley residents, and there are more than 25 active construction sites. The Authority has also environmentally cleared 422 miles of the high-speed rail program from the Bay Area to the Los Angeles Basin.

Visit for the latest construction information.

The following link contains recent video, animations, photography, press center resources and latest renderings:

These files are all available for free use, courtesy of the California High-Speed Rail Authority.


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