Friday, January 31, 2014

Tea Party fights to protect sprawl in Fresno, CA.

Fresno City Council Slams the Brakes on BRT | Streetsblog Capitol Hill: "But Barker said the system had become a target of local sprawl developers who allied themselves with Tea Party activists. The real target of the opposition, she says, wasn’t BRT but a general plan adopted by the city in 2012 that called for dramatically limiting sprawl and promoting walkable development in urban areas. Beefing up transit was critical to the proposal, and last night some elected leaders indicated they thought the two-year-old plan needed to be overhauled."

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Humans are not "in charge" of the biosphere

Pro-growth agents promote the idea that humans always succeed and will solve climate change. The implication is that there is no need for activism, someone will take care of it.

Resource Insights: Is "the environment" now obsolete?: "But, we humans are not "in charge" of the biosphere. We are only competing and cooperating with various parts of it in a struggle to survive and thrive. Isn't it obvious by now that the biosphere does not always do what we want it to do and only what we want it to do? It's as if the law of unintended consequences has never occurred to Ellis.

Given that we know now that all organisms try to remake the biosphere to their liking, this should make us far less confident that we can make everything turn out just fine for humans. Keep in mind that we face a bewildering and essentially incalculable array of actors with whom we are forced sometimes to fight and sometimes to cooperate. In fact, we cannot even know what all of them are and probably are only familiar with a small sliver of all that lives. Our knowledge of the biosphere and the Earth is not just imperfect, it is wildly imperfect. If we're so smart, why didn't we avoid changing the climate, devastating the fisheries, degrading the soil through rapid erosion, and lacing the air, water and soil with toxic chemicals in the first place?"

'via Blog this'

Monday, January 20, 2014

Cars are major contributors to green house gases

High Country News: "As one might expect, most of the extra suburban emissions come from transportation. America’s suburbs, especially those in the West, were designed and built with the automobile in mind, making residents prisoners of their cars. Walking or biking from one’s cul-de-sac to work in the urban core can be a harrowing experience, and in some places virtually impossible. Even when progressive metros like Denver expand the public transit web out into the ‘burbs, it’s not always easy to get from home to the bus stop without driving, and if you’re driving to the bus stop, why not just keep going all the way to work?"

'via Blog this'

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Not much snow in Tahoe as drought continues

Sunny Sierra raises chilling drought fears - SFGate: "The state's frozen water supply, as snow is known to water-resources officials, is 19 percent of normal for this time of year, according to electronic measurements taken across the Sierra. This is the water that is going to be used to irrigate millions of acres of farmland and quench the thirst of many of California's 38 million people when it melts in the spring."

'via Blog this'