Saturday, December 22, 2012

Researchers Quantify Greenhouse Gases From Melting Arctic Permafrost: 'Potential To Alter The Planet Is Very Real' | ThinkProgress

Researchers Quantify Greenhouse Gases From Melting Arctic Permafrost: 'Potential To Alter The Planet Is Very Real' | ThinkProgress: "Surely the only rational conclusion that one, even a non-scientist, can draw from recent events is that a catastrophe is in its early stages. For our immediate purposes this is partly a climate catastrophe, but when one also considers biodiversity loss, oceanic acidification and stratification, the spread of anoxic and hypoxic ‘dead zones’, the loss of 90% of large pelagic fish, mass tree deaths across the planet, megafires and the general toxification of the biosphere by ubiquitous pollution of every kind, then certainly we are stuffed. The only way out, growing slimmer and less likely by the hour, is a concerted global program of rapid decarbonisation and centuries of hard graft in ecological repair. And to achieve that miraculous escape all dreams of global Empire, of the ineffable superiority of ‘Western Civilization’ over the rest of humanity, of the efficacy of unbridled greed as the path to human happiness and of inexorable, neoplastic, economic growth must be recognised as the nightmares that they truly are. Wealth must no longer be accumulated by a tiny caste of the infinitely avaricious, but rather must be redistributed back to the people who created every cent of it. And consumption and human population must be humanely reduced, yesterday preferably, but today must suffice. Any politician, economist or soothsayer with any other program is, I would assert, an idiot, a liar or an ignoramus, or some combination of these virtues." (comment by Mulga Mumblebrain)

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Sprawl subsidy in Maine

Is the state giving money to ‘well-off’ suburbs at expense of urban areas? — State — Bangor Daily News — BDN Maine: "“We have this weird situation where relatively less well-off populations in service-center communities and in truly rural places are having their tax dollars transferred to relatively well-off suburban places,” Richert said."

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Sunday, December 16, 2012

We keep dumping millions into roads and we still have deadly bottlenecks

Route 128 Add-a-Lane project: Not so fast - Metro - The Boston Globe: "Of course, those were the same people who brought you the Big Dig. The actual cost is more like $350 million, about 3½ times the inflation-adjusted sum, and the first shovel did not go into the ground until 2003. The work might wrap up by 2017."

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Wednesday, December 12, 2012

A taste of #freetransit and many are hooked

Even American Drivers Like Mass Transit More Than They Think - Commute - The Atlantic Cities: "In recent years, transportation experts have found that if drivers get a free taste of mass transit, many of them find they actually want a bit more. The approach has worked, albeit on a limited trial basis, in developed cities around the world: from Kyoto to Leeds to greater Copenhagen. Transit ridership in Châteauroux jumped after the mayor made the system free. Swedish commuters who rode free transit for a month found themselves more satisfied with it than they thought they'd be."

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Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Bill McKibben says "Make mass transit free"

Bill McKibben: Think About the Transportation Sector: "Redirect federal investments in ways that massively expand and improve the U.S. transit system. We need to bring quality public transport systems to the 57 percent of the public who today have limited or no access to mass transit and therefore rely on cars and taxis to get around. This will require shifting public money towards building new bus, subway and rail systems. If mass transit investments rose steadily, it would provide efficient, quality transport services, and reduce emissions and harmful pollution at the same time. Investing in transit is also a good way to create jobs in the U.S. -- for every billion dollars spent on transit investments 36,000 Americans secure a good job.

Step 3: Make mass transit free, or reduce its cost dramatically, by taking the money we waste now on fossil fuel subsidies and redirecting it towards our transit systems. Senator Bernie Sanders has identified more than $113 billion in fossil fuel subsidies that can be eliminated over the next decade; that could fill fareboxes, which in turn would fill our buses and trains."

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Sunday, December 9, 2012

Read my lips, no new roads

Mass. has the vision to fix transportation - Opinion - The Boston Globe: "For a first-class economic future, the Commonwealth requires a first-class transportation system. As state transportation officials have already spelled out, this future will rely heavily on public transportation and will focus highway funds on maintenance rather than expansion. "

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