Saturday, May 13, 2017

Massachusetts - Want business? Got #transit?

MetroWest: "Public transportation options are often a key factor when major corporations decide where to locate, William Kennedy, an asset manager at National Development, told guests Friday at the annual MetroWest Economic Research Center (MERC) Conference hosted by Framingham State University. He cited two companies that recently showed interest in moving into the 9/ 90 Corporate Center in Framingham but opted to move to the New Balance corporate office in Brighton because of better access to public transportation.

“It is definitely the first or second question they ask,” Kennedy said about mass transit."

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Amtrak subsidy lower than most people think

90.5 WESA: "“Amtrak requires less subsidy than any other national rail system,” Dukakis says. “Amtrak makes more of its money from the fare box than any other national rail passenger system in the world. ... About 85 percent of its expenses are paid for by passengers and system revenue. That's pretty remarkable, and I don't think most people understand this.”

Amtrak’s current subsidies pale in comparison to the nation’s highway system, Dukakis points out. Highways in America get over $40 billion dollars in federal funding every year; air transportation gets about $16 billion. Amtrak’s funding is down to a few hundred million dollars."

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Atmospheric carbon breaks a record while US kills Muslims for more oil

Climate Central : "On Tuesday, the Mauna Loa Observatory recorded its first-ever carbon dioxide reading in excess of 410 parts per million (it was 410.28 ppm in case you want the full deal). Carbon dioxide hasn’t reached that height in millions of years. It’s a new atmosphere that humanity will have to contend with, one that’s trapping more heat and causing the climate to change at a quickening rate."

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

CT Politicians squabble over #autosprawl meltdown

Yankee Institute : "In 2016, the national transportation research organization reported 44 percent of the state’s major roads are in poor condition and 34 percent of the bridges are in need of major repair or replacement.
A 2016 study by the Reason Foundation found that Connecticut ranked 47th in the nation in terms of cost effectiveness for its transportation spending. Connecticut has spent a total of $477,875 per mile of road in the state."

Thursday, April 6, 2017

#Farefree bus system in VT keeps going despite snow

reformer : ""Sometimes, the road is closed," she said. "Sometimes, it's very slow going. Our buses don't have difficulty getting over the mountain. But often, other cars or tractor trailers are in the way.""

Friday, March 24, 2017

Humans gambling against sudden methane release

truth-out: "The scenario that humans have created by way of the industrial growth society is already mimicking these eventualities, which are certain to worsen.

"The end Permian holds an important lesson for humanity regarding the issue it faces today with greenhouse gas emissions, global warming, and climate change," the abstract of the recent study concludes.

As the global CO2 concentration continues to climb each year, the threat of even more abrupt methane additions continues to escalate along with it."

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Old people in the US are prisoners in car culture. They should ride buses free.

Augusta needs transportation options for senior citizens - Central Maine: "Older people risk isolation when they can no longer drive or opt not to drive, losing their sense of independence and social inclusion. It can be a heart-wrenching experience if and when you have to take the car keys away from an aging relative and you see the loss and worry in their eyes. Living in a rural state only magnifies the issue."

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Gayle Rodgers: Public transportation is best solution to meter problem

providencejournal : "People who need to go to Thayer Street, Hope Street or wherever for the day should use public transportation. That way, those who shop in these trendy areas - and I frequent them myself - can stay all day. All one has to do is check the Rhode Island Public Transit Authority schedule for arrival and departure times. If more folks used RIPTA, it would run better for all riders.

When people complain about trying to go to the movies or shop for five hours with the worry of that parking meter hanging over them, I have little empathy.

Take the bus, meet your friends in any part of Providence, and make RIPTA work for everyone. Merchants can also suggest that their customers take the bus, and they can list the bus line on which their business is located.

Gayle Rodgers


Physicist shows direct relationship between energy and wealth

Economics: "The coming century is guaranteed to be one of immense change. At current exponential growth rates we will double our energy demands in just 30 years, adding as much to our consumption capacity in our working lifetimes as we have in the entire history of civilization.
Expressed quantitatively: summing over all the world’s nations, 7.1 Watts is required to maintain every one thousand inflation-adjusted 2005 dollars of a very general representation of historically accumulated economic wealth."
This means even if emissions are zero, heat will rise with growth. At 2.3% growth we double every 30 years in the amount of energy needed to maintain our economy. Human energy use releases heat. Heat melts clathrates and peat.

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Why, for #climate, heat is more important than emissions

There are two things about fossil-fuels that are often confused. First, they put out a lot of green-house gas. Second they have enabled us to grow to over 7 billion people.

There is a lot of focus on reducing emissions, but what if we do not address heat? Heat is the form that energy takes when used for human life. Even if that heat is from a solar panel it will still add to overall heat. Those solar rays should be hitting plant life and being stored.

Much worse, heat now threatens to dissolve the permafrost and underwater clathrates. Recently a massive store of peat was discovered in Africa. If these things release their gases and heat, it won't matter how many solar-powered gadgets we have sold.

There is only one policy that directly addresses heat. Luckily it also is the best policy for emissions. That policy is degrowth. We already have falling birth rates in many areas. We can encourage that with carfree cities. When people urbanize, birth rates fall.