U.S. Department of Transportation DOT

GROUP: Specialized Agencies

  • Topic A: Building a High-Speed Rail
  • Topic B: Aviation Emissions and Regulations

TOPIC A Building a High-Speed Rail

TOPIC B Aviation Emissions and Regulations


  • Sherry Guo
  • Lily Hong
Email Committee Chair

The Department of Transportation (DOT) is a Cabinet department of the United States government focused on issues relating to transportation. The purpose of DOT is to ensure safety in American transportation, while also promoting efficiency, innovation, and economic productivity to keep the US globally competitive. Employing over 55,000 people across the US and overseeing 11 operating administrations, DOT has the power to bring about substantive transportation changes that can enhance the quality of life of all communities in the US.

This committee is a specialized body that mainly contains traditional Model UN elements. However, there will be one session with crisis elements. Crisis experience is not required nor would it incur any special advantage. Please read the background guide carefully for the special rules and procedures of this committee.

Topic A: Building a High-Speed Rail
While high-speed rails exist in many countries around the world, the United States currently does not have one. Many Americans support the building of this infrastructure because it is environmentally-conscious and convenient. However, many others are critical of a high-speed rail because of its high costs and concerns over federalism. Delegates in this committee must consider the many facets of this infrastructure project and work together to strategically implement a high-speed rail system that addresses the many concerns and achieves the primary goals of the DOT.

Topic B: Aviation Emissions and Regulations
One major critique of the Department of Transportation and the Federal Aviation Administration under the DOT from environmentalists is the significant amount of influence the aviation industry has on its own regulations. Currently, airplanes are the largest source of carbon dioxide emissions from the U.S. transportation sector that is not subject to federal emissions regulations. As emissions trends continue to rise, so do threats they pose to human and environmental health. Delegates must consider the environmental impact of greenhouse gases from aviation emissions and the economic impact of potential regulation, working together to achieve a balance between the regulators, the regulated, and the public.