Five local transit agencies team up for Earth Day Free Ride Event on Monday, April 22.

Santa Barbara, Calif. – Local transit agencies countywide are offering free bus rides to make it easier for the community to give back to the planet this Earth Day, April 22. This one-day initiative aims to promote cleaner air, reduce carbon footprints, and inspire the public to choose more sustainable transportation options.

Automobiles are identified by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as the leading source of greenhouse gas emissions.

“By choosing public transit over personal vehicles, community members can play an important role in lessening their environmental impact and contributing to a healthier planet, said Aaron Bonfilio, director of multimodal programs for Santa Barbara County Association of Governments (SBCAG)”

Participating transit agencies include SBCAG Clean Air Express, Santa Barbara Metropolitan Transit District (MTD), Santa Maria Area Transit (SMRT), Santa Ynez Valley Transit (SYVT), and Ventura County Transportation Commission (VCTC).

“We are all about SM(a)RT travel options. Budget friendly and ecological ones,” said Gamaliel Anguiano, transit manager, City of Santa Maria. “Earth day is the perfect time to get on board!”

For those whose daily commutes are served by other systems, such as COLT or Guadalupe Flyer, SBCAG extends the opportunity for the public to ride free by signing up in advance with the Try Transit program.

“If you aren’t a regular transit rider—Earth Day is a great time to give it a try,” said Hillary Blackerby, planning and marketing manager at Santa Barbara MTD. “And for the regular riders who are already doing their part to reduce congestion and emissions by taking the bus, it’s our way of saying ‘thank you!’.”

In Ventura County, all transit operators, including VCTC, are offering free rides on Earth Day. Riders can use any bus service at no cost.

For more information on routes and schedules to make the most of this Earth Day offer, the public is encouraged to visit the websites of the participating transportation providers.

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