Pete Buttigieg Confirmed as Transportation Secretary
After his Feb 2. Senate confirmation, he is expected to oversee the rebuilding of America’s roads and help strengthen transportation systems.
- By Nikki Johnson-Bolden
- Feb 04, 2021
Pete Buttigieg, former mayor of South Bend, IN, was confirmed by the Senate to serve as transportation secretary on Feb. 2, according to NPR.
Buttigieg was confirmed in a 86 to 13 vote. As transportation secretary he will oversee matters related to federal highways, railroads, air traffic and pipelines. The Transportation Department has 55,000 employees.
Under Buttigieg’s leadership, the Transportation Department is expected to make climate change a priority in relation to transportation. The Associated Press reports that Buttigieg will seek to strengthen “automotive fuel economy standards to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.” There will also be an effort to rebuild roads and bridges, as well as the expansion of zero-emission transit.
Extra attention will be given to how transportation can be made safer for people as the coronavirus pandemic continues.
The National Safety Council (NSC) congratulated Buttigieg on his confirmation and urged him to make a commitment to eliminate preventable roadway deaths by the year 2050. The NSC cited a growing number of vehicle deaths as the reason for this commitment to be made.
Nikki Johnson-Bolden is an Associate Content Editor for Occupational Health & Safety.