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Kyoto promises are nothing but hot air

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  • Eric.britton
    Kyoto promises are nothing but hot air http://www.insnet.org/ins_headlines.rxml?cust=1001&id=2963&url=http://ww
    Message 1 of 14 , Jun 26, 2006
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      Kyoto promises are nothing but hot air

      http://www.insnet.org/ins_headlines.rxml?cust=1001&id=2963&url=http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg19025574.000-kyoto-promises-are-nothing-but-hot-air.html
       

      MANY governments, including some that claim to be leading the fight against global warming, are harbouring a dirty little secret. These countries are emitting far more greenhouse gas than they say they are, a fact that threatens to undermine not only the shaky
      Kyoto protocol but also the new multibillion-dollar market in carbon trading.

      Under
      Kyoto, each government calculates how much carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide its country emits by adding together estimated emissions from individual sources. These so-called "bottom-up" estimates have long been accepted by atmospheric scientists, even though they have never been independently audited.

      Now two teams that have monitored concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere say they have convincing evidence that the figures reported by many countries are wrong, especially for methane. Among the worst offenders are the
      UK, which may be emitting 92 per cent more methane than it declares under the Kyoto protocol, and France, which may be emitting 47 per cent more.

      Peter Bergamaschi of the European Commission Joint Research Centre at
      Ispra, Italy, used an alternative "top-down" technique to study emissions across Europe. His technique is to measure in detail how concentrations of greenhouse gases vary across the globe. Levels are generally higher near major sources such as industrial centres, and when weather conditions trap the pollution. They are lower near natural "sinks" such as cold areas of ocean. Concentrations can also vary widely depending on factors such as the weather. Over London, for example, methane levels vary from 1800 parts per billion (ppb), the global background level, on windy days to upwards of 3000 ppb when local emissions from landfills and gas pipelines are trapped by cold night air.

      By measuring these differences and tracking air movements, the scientists say they can calculate a country's emissions independently of government estimates. Bergamaschi's calculations suggest that the
      UK emitted 4.21 million tonnes of methane in 2004 compared to the 2.19 million tonnes it declared, while France emitted 4.43 million tonnes compared to the 3.01 million tonnes it declared. Methane is an extremely powerful greenhouse gas. While it persists in the atmosphere for only one-tenth as long as CO2, its immediate warming effect, tonne for tonne, is around 100 times greater. According to some estimates, methane is responsible for a third of current global warming, and reductions in methane emissions may be the quickest and cheapest way of slowing climate change.

      Bergamaschi's figures are based on real atmospheric measurements that integrate emissions over large areas. While he admits that they cannot be entirely accurate, they are free from some of the sources of error that apply to national declared figures, which are based on uncertain extrapolations from sites such as landfills, whose emissions are highly variable.

      During the course of Bergamaschi's study, the German government revised its estimate of national methane emissions upwards by some 70 per cent, placing it close to his estimate. The British and French governments continue to stick with their low estimates. Bergamaschi told New Scientist that the
      UK appears to be badly under-reporting methane bubbling out of landfill sites, while France's emissions seem to be generally under-reported. On the other hand, Ireland and Finland may be overestimating emissions from peat bogs.

      Bergamaschi's calculations are supported by a similar study led by Euan Nisbet of Royal Holloway University of London, who is a member of the Global Atmosphere Watch (GAW), a network of atmospheric scientists organised by the UN's World Meteorological Organization. Nisbet estimates that methane emissions in the
      London area in the late 1990s were 40 to 80 per cent higher than declared by the government at the time.
       
      Both scientists believe that countries outside
      Europe are also likely to be under-reporting their emissions, and that the problem is global. "We know the total global emissions well enough, but individual national numbers may be badly out. Some are too big and some are too small," Nisbet says.

      In the past, he says, estimates of greenhouse gas emissions were inaccurate simply because of the difficulty of measuring them, but that may have changed. "Now that money enters the picture, with the
      Kyoto protocol rules and carbon trading, so also can fraud. There will be an incentive to under-report emissions." Nisbet, Bergamaschi and other scientists now want to create a global system for auditing emissions claims by directly measuring concentrations of greenhouse gases in the air.

      Most existing monitoring sites are intended to measure background gas levels in clean ocean and mountain air. The oldest and most famous is on top of
      Mauna Loa in Hawaii, where US researcher David Keeling first proved half a century ago that CO2 levels in the air were rising. The network now run by GAW is far from comprehensive: it includes just one station in China, sited on the relatively unpolluted Tibetan plateau, while India's sole site is in the unpolluted mountainous Ladakh region. There is no continuous monitoring in inland Africa, and only a few stations in South America and south-east Asia. Yet these regions support more than half the world's population and are responsible for a growing proportion of its greenhouse gas emissions.

      Some western governments, say the scientists, have been reluctant to set up permanent monitoring stations. "Of all the G8 nations, the
      UK does the least," says Nisbet, who runs the only permanent monitoring point in England, from his lab near Egham, on the south-western fringes of London. The longest-running CO2 monitoring point on British soil, in the Shetland Islands, was run by Australia till 2001 and is now funded by Germany. France runs a network of monitors on its remote island territories round the world, but the UK government refuses pleas for it to do likewise on territories such as Ascension Island or South Georgia in the remote South Atlantic, or the Chagos Islands in the Indian Ocean. The European Union recently shut down its pioneering programme of measuring atmospheric methane across the continent. "Ironically, the best monitoring is done by the US and Australia, which are both in denial over Kyoto," Nisbet says.

      The GAW scientists say that a global greenhouse gas monitoring network should provide open access to the information it collects. Only then, they say, will it be possible to do independent calculations to discover who is emitting what, and test which countries are complying with
      Kyoto and making accurate claims about their emissions. Until such a network is in place, it will be all too easy for nations such as the UK to talk green while acting dirty.

      From issue 2557 of New Scientist magazine,
      22 June 2006, page 10

      Sins of Omission?

      The most alarming failure of greenhouse gas emissions reporting is thought to have occurred in
      China, the world's second largest emitter. In the late 1990s, when its economy was growing by 10 per cent a year, the Chinese government reported a dramatic fall in CO2 emissions to the UN climate change convention. It declared that, after a long period of steep increases, emissions had fallen from 911 million tonnes of carbon a year in 1996 to 757 million tonnes in 2000, a drop of 17 per cent.

      China said the fall in emissions was achieved by burning less coal, an assessment it based on a decline in coal production. Some analysts praised the country for using coal more efficiently, but that picture was called into doubt when declared coal production and emissions estimates resumed their fast rise. Estimates for 2004 put China's CO2 emissions above 1200 million tonnes.

      Most analysts now conclude that the drop in emissions was entirely illusory. It coincided with major changes in the organisation of the Chinese coal industry, which replaced state targets with a market system. "Emissions figures before 1996 were inflated because mine officials had production targets to meet, and declared they had met them when they had not," one analyst told New Scientist. By 2000, this effect had gone, and "subsequent figures for CO2 emissions are probably more accurate as a result." While the Chinese government may not have intentionally misled the international community over its emissions at the time, the incident reveals how easy it could be to fiddle official figures.




      Source: New Scientist

    • Ken Crispin, Napier. NZ.
      We would like to see more focus on rail rather than road, as it is the much cleaner environmentally sustainable mode of transport that leaves a smaller
      Message 2 of 14 , Jul 6, 2006
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        We would like to see more focus on rail rather than road, as it is the much cleaner environmentally sustainable mode of transport that leaves a smaller footprint on the environment also.

         

        Ken Crispin. Project Manager.

        Citizens Environmental Advocacy Centre In'c.

        Napier. NZ.

        clean.air@...

         

         

      • kunpeng chen
        Dear All, Please visit www.combusto.net for cleaner air. Regards, Ron Tan 0065-9145-9147 www.combusto.net Ken@yahoo.com,
        Message 3 of 14 , Jul 7, 2006
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          Dear All,
          Please visit www.combusto.net
          for cleaner air.
          Regards,
          Ron Tan
          0065-9145-9147
          www.combusto.net

          Ken@..., UNEXPECTED_DATA_AFTER_ADDRESS@.SYNTAX-ERROR. 写道:
          We would like to see more focus on rail rather than road, as it is the much cleaner environmentally sustainable mode of transport that leaves a smaller footprint on the environment also.
           
          Ken Crispin. Project Manager.
          Citizens Environmental Advocacy Centre In'c.
          Napier. NZ.
           
           


          抢注雅虎免费邮箱-3.5G容量,20M附件!

        • Sujit Patwardhan
          7 July 2006 Ken makes an important point, but I think it s somewhat more complex than that. Although it is true that rail is perhaps cleaner environmentally at
          Message 4 of 14 , Jul 7, 2006
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            7 July 2006


            Ken makes an important point, but I think it's somewhat more complex than that.

            Although it is true that rail is perhaps cleaner environmentally at the end-user stage, we are all aware of the environmental issue relating to generating electricity (hydro-electric??, coal-fired?? nuclear??). I think we are also conscious of the Rail versus BRT debate at least for the urban traffic scenario which is mainly centred around the great attraction for  Metro systems which are at least ten times more expensive than a top class BRT and it also links the argument to the issues of city size, urban sprawl as well as for its possible negative impact on pubic funds that are meagre to start with.

            However the criteria would perhaps alter if one is talking about regional or national transport where a greater focus on rail instead of road transport would I suppose have greater justification.

            With regards,

            --
            Sujit
            Sujit Patwardhan
            Parisar/PTTF
            Pune,
            India







            On 7/7/06, kunpeng chen < prcbus@...> wrote:
            Dear All,
            Please visit www.combusto.net
            for cleaner air.
            Regards,
            Ron Tan
            0065-9145-9147
            www.combusto.net

            Ken@..., UNEXPECTED_DATA_AFTER_ADDRESS@.SYNTAX-ERROR. 写道:
            We would like to see more focus on rail rather than road, as it is the much cleaner environmentally sustainable mode of transport that leaves a smaller footprint on the environment also.
             
            Ken Crispin. Project Manager.
            Citizens Environmental Advocacy Centre In'c.
            Napier. NZ.
             
             


            抢注雅虎免费邮箱-3.5G容量,20M附件!




            --
            ------------------------------------------------------
            Sujit Patwardhan
            sujit@...
            sujitjp@...

            "Yamuna",
            ICS Colony,
            Ganeshkhind Road,
            Pune 411 007
            India
            Tel: 25537955
            -----------------------------------------------------
            Hon. Secretary:
            Parisar
            www.parisar.org
            ------------------------------------------------------
            Founder Member:
            PTTF
            (Pune Traffic & Transportation Forum)
            www.pttf.net
            ------------------------------------------------------
          • Anzir Boodoo
            Sujit, ... I still think it depends on other factors. I agree that city authorities love the idea of Metro systems, but these can sometimes be of limited use.
            Message 5 of 14 , Jul 10, 2006
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              Sujit,
              On 7 Jul 2006, at 20:50, Sujit Patwardhan wrote:
              > Ken makes an important point, but I think it's somewhat more
              > complex than that.
              >
              > Although it is true that rail is perhaps cleaner environmentally at
              > the end-user stage, we are all aware of the environmental issue
              > relating to generating electricity (hydro-electric??, coal-fired??
              > nuclear??). I think we are also conscious of the Rail versus BRT
              > debate at least for the urban traffic scenario which is mainly
              > centred around the great attraction for Metro systems which are at
              > least ten times more expensive than a top class BRT and it also
              > links the argument to the issues of city size, urban sprawl as well
              > as for its possible negative impact on pubic funds that are meagre
              > to start with.
              >
              > However the criteria would perhaps alter if one is talking about
              > regional or national transport where a greater focus on rail
              > instead of road transport would I suppose have greater justification.
              I still think it depends on other factors.

              I agree that city authorities love the idea of Metro systems, but
              these can sometimes be of limited use.

              For suburb to city transport, urban heavy rail (commuter rail) is a
              good choice:

              1. The infrastructure is already there in many cases, and just needs
              upgrading (sometimes) and new stations
              2. It does not use the street, and therefore frees road capacity
              3. It is faster than BRT
              4. Many cities already have networks, even if they are badly
              developed in many cases.

              Many cities in Northern England depend on their rail networks, and in
              some cases outdated or disused infrastructure has spurred the
              creation of Metro type systems at much lower cost than if they were
              built from new (as in Manchester and Newcastle). These can then be
              supplemented with top class BRT or low cost LRT. I have previously
              been working with people who aim to connect the two technologies,
              making them more compatible with each other, but this work is now
              impossible without funding and technical backup - and guess what, the
              large transport engineering firms want to sell BRT and LRT rather
              than talk to us...

              --
              Anzir Boodoo MRes MILT Aff. IRO
              transcience, 72 Staplehurst, BRACKNELL RG12 8DD
            • Jay Corrales
              Hi Ken, What do you think about the Bus Rapid Transit system in Brisbane, AU? While I prefer rail, it seems that the BRT system offers a lot in the way of
              Message 6 of 14 , Jul 23, 2006
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                Hi Ken,

                What do you think about the Bus Rapid Transit system in Brisbane, AU?  While I prefer rail, it seems that the BRT system offers a lot in the way of flexibility.  Also, when running on the alternative fuels or even electricity, I believe it can be very clean in regards to emissions.

                Although I am not versed in the impact of roads.  If anyone has any insight in regards to the impact of road building vs. rail construction (and also the effects of tunneling), I would be much appreciative.

                Sincerely,
                Jay Corrales
                Move San Diego Board of Directors
                San Diego, CA, USA


                Ken.Crispin wrote:

                We would like to see more focus on rail rather than road, as it is the much cleaner environmentally sustainable mode of transport that leaves a smaller footprint on the environment also.

                 

                Ken Crispin. Project Manager.

                Citizens Environmental Advocacy Centre In'c.

                Napier. NZ.

                clean.air@...

                 

                 


              • Lee Schipper
                I had a great ride on the Brisbane line in 2003 * I dont think there is a simple way of measuring footprints * in Australia, China, India, the majority of
                Message 7 of 14 , Jul 23, 2006
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                  I had a great ride on the Brisbane line in 2003 * I dont think there is a simple way of measuring footprints * in Australia,
                  China, India, the majority of electric power comes from coal. Is that clean?

                  Lee Schipper
                  Director of Research
                  EMBARQ, the WRI Center
                  for Sustainable Transport
                  Washington DC
                  +1202 729 7735
                  www.embarq.wri.org

                  >>> jay@... 7/23/2006 1:27 PM >>>
                  Hi Ken,

                  What do you think about the Bus Rapid Transit system in Brisbane, AU?
                  While I prefer rail, it seems that the BRT system offers a lot in the
                  way of flexibility. Also, when running on the alternative fuels or even
                  electricity, I believe it can be very clean in regards to emissions.

                  Although I am not versed in the impact of roads. If anyone has any
                  insight in regards to the impact of road building vs. rail construction
                  (and also the effects of tunneling), I would be much appreciative.

                  Sincerely,
                  Jay Corrales
                  Move San Diego Board of Directors
                  San Diego, CA, USA


                  Ken.Crispin wrote:
                  >
                  > We would like to see more focus on rail rather than road, as it is the
                  > much cleaner environmentally sustainable mode of transport that leaves
                  > a smaller footprint on the environment also.
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > Ken Crispin. Project Manager.
                  >
                  > Citizens Environmental Advocacy Centre In'c.
                  >
                  > Napier. NZ.
                  >
                  > clean.air@... <mailto:clean.air@...>
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                • Roland Sapsford
                  Recently Auckland, New Zealand has just completed a busway complete with stations on the North Shore of Auckland Harbour. This is a distinct dedicated route
                  Message 8 of 14 , Jul 23, 2006
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                    Recently Auckland, New Zealand has just completed a busway complete with
                    stations on the North Shore of Auckland Harbour. This is a distinct
                    dedicated route with one lane each way and is not a guided busway.

                    Auckland is a sprawly city of 1m people somewhat similar to Perth in
                    density. The busway is performing well in terms of patronage, and park
                    and ride stations are full especially at the northern end. The bulk of
                    patronage growth has been through car and bus journeys to the stations
                    along the way. The route runs parallel to an existing 6 lane motorway
                    and has been built by Transit New Zealand - the national highway
                    building authority - which is very experienced at contract management.

                    I mention all of this in preamble to the fact that the most
                    disappointing aspect of this is that the per km cost has been around
                    three times that associated with equivalent light rail and the land use
                    footprint of the corridor is considerably larger.

                    The Brisbane situations is complex and has involved the expansion of
                    both rail and bus services. The busway in part functions to get buses
                    past highway congestion and performs this role quite well. I understand
                    operating costs have been higher than projected, but I am unsure as to
                    the extent of this.

                    As someone with considerable experience in transport debates (and
                    someone who helped ensure the above project proceeded) I am concerned to
                    see busway proponents in this country and elsewhere adopting the kind of
                    misleading and hyperbolic claims I normally associate with the highway
                    lobby. Curitiba for example is often cited as a bus-based system; they
                    have the same issue of capacity on routes versus flexibility and to
                    achieve high capacity their trunk buses operate very much like trains.
                    A large study team from New Zealand went to Curitiba a couple of years
                    ago and produced quite a detailed report on a wide range of urban
                    sustainability issues.

                    The best place for information on impacts of road versus rail
                    construction is Europe, where there has been significant construction of
                    both major roads and major rail projects in the last two decades. In
                    general impact of construction relates to the land footprint, rather
                    than mode. This is particularly important in cities, because a major
                    economic rationale for cities is to maximise the opportunities for
                    interaction while minimising distance travelled. Highways have very
                    limited peak volumes in relation to the land they occupy, when compared
                    with rail especially, and so have much higher adverse economic impacts
                    in urban settings where peak corridor volumes are high.

                    As to tunnelling - its really hard to generalise. For highways it is
                    generally a matter of relative cost. The impacts are considerably less
                    than cut and fill for example! Tunnelling costs tend to be higher than
                    daylighting (though this depends on the cost of fill disposal) but the
                    local impacts are far far less. Whether tunnelling is viable depends on
                    huge range of factors that are highly localised (eg geological
                    conditions).

                    Best wishes
                    Roland Sapsford
                    Wellington, New Zealand





                    Jay Corrales wrote:
                    > Hi Ken,
                    >
                    > What do you think about the Bus Rapid Transit system in Brisbane, AU?
                    > While I prefer rail, it seems that the BRT system offers a lot in the
                    > way of flexibility. Also, when running on the alternative fuels or
                    > even electricity, I believe it can be very clean in regards to emissions.
                    >
                    > Although I am not versed in the impact of roads. If anyone has any
                    > insight in regards to the impact of road building vs. rail
                    > construction (and also the effects of tunneling), I would be much
                    > appreciative.
                    >
                    > Sincerely,
                    > Jay Corrales
                    > Move San Diego Board of Directors
                    > San Diego, CA, USA
                    >
                    >
                    > Ken.Crispin wrote:
                    >>
                    >> We would like to see more focus on rail rather than road, as it is
                    >> the much cleaner environmentally sustainable mode of transport that
                    >> leaves a smaller footprint on the environment also.
                    >>
                    >>
                    >>
                    >> Ken Crispin. Project Manager.
                    >>
                    >> Citizens Environmental Advocacy Centre In'c.
                    >>
                    >> Napier. NZ.
                    >>
                    >> clean.air@... <mailto:clean.air@...>
                    >>
                    >>
                    >>
                    >>
                    >>
                    >
                    >
                  • Jay Corrales
                    Hi Lee, Yes, I agree that currently there is a lot of dirty electricity production which would have to be considered as you look for a true alternative, but
                    Message 9 of 14 , Jul 23, 2006
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                      Hi Lee,

                      Yes, I agree that currently there is a lot of dirty electricity production which would have to be considered as you look for a true alternative, but what I see in the near future is that electricity could be mostly derived from clean energy sources such as solar and wind power.  I think an opportunity could exist for a bus depot with a solar panel array to charge vehicles and supply extra energy to the electricity grid.

                      Sorry to be so off tangent now... but I also have read that electric-powered vehicles are much cheaper to maintain than internal combustion vehicles (I haven't done much research on this yet, but I believe they mention it in "Who Killed The Electric Car").   I also see the possible opportunity for the using integrated solar panels on the roof as well.

                      Jay Corrales
                      Board of Directors
                      Move San Diego
                      San Diego, CA, USA


                      Lee Schipper wrote:
                      I had a great ride on the Brisbane line in 2003 * I dont think there is a simple way of measuring footprints * in Australia,
                      China, India, the majority of electric power comes from coal. Is that clean?  
                      
                      Lee Schipper
                      Director of Research
                      EMBARQ, the WRI Center
                      for Sustainable Transport
                      Washington DC
                      +1202 729 7735
                      www.embarq.wri.org
                      
                        
                      jay@... 7/23/2006 1:27 PM >>>
                              
                      Hi Ken,
                      
                      What do you think about the Bus Rapid Transit system in Brisbane, AU?  
                      While I prefer rail, it seems that the BRT system offers a lot in the 
                      way of flexibility.  Also, when running on the alternative fuels or even 
                      electricity, I believe it can be very clean in regards to emissions.
                      
                      Although I am not versed in the impact of roads.  If anyone has any 
                      insight in regards to the impact of road building vs. rail construction 
                      (and also the effects of tunneling), I would be much appreciative.
                      
                      Sincerely,
                      Jay Corrales
                      Move San Diego Board of Directors
                      San Diego, CA, USA
                      
                      
                      Ken.Crispin wrote:
                        
                      We would like to see more focus on rail rather than road, as it is the 
                      much cleaner environmentally sustainable mode of transport that leaves 
                      a smaller footprint on the environment also.
                      
                       
                      
                      Ken Crispin. Project Manager.
                      
                      Citizens Environmental Advocacy Centre In'c.
                      
                      Napier. NZ.
                      
                      clean.air@... <mailto:clean.air@...>
                      
                       
                      
                       
                      
                       
                          
                      
                      
                      .
                      
                        

                    • John Whitelegg
                      Hi, A small contribution. We have to move (I suggest) from an energy/emissions perspective on this to a wider total impact perspective. It is remarkable
                      Message 10 of 14 , Jul 24, 2006
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                        Hi,

                        A small contribution. We have to move (I suggest) from an energy/emissions
                        perspective on this to a wider "total impact" perspective. It is remarkable
                        that after 30 years or more of general debate about transport and
                        environmental impacts we still miss/downplay things like:

                        land take (and the impact of loss of land for transport infrastructure on
                        food production and biodiversity)

                        fragmentation (a tiny land take is a 100% change in character if it
                        physically divides and separates a formerly unified area)

                        landscape (see Ian McHarg)

                        noise (see excellent analyses from World Health Organisation)

                        fiscal matters (who says that spending billions on roads or high speed
                        trains is a good way to allocate resources against competing demands in
                        health care, education, poverty, pensions etc)

                        social justice (what proportion of our transport spending benefits the top
                        10% income band? We have some evidence in the UK that 30% of spending
                        benefits the top 10%)

                        children..are our transport systems and cities child friendly. Definitely
                        not

                        transport and health. is there a connection between the Uk with the highest
                        rate of child obesity in Europe and the highest rate of kids being taken to
                        school by car in Europe?



                        there is lots more!

                        energy and emissions are important but we have to be careful to factor in
                        other things


                        very best wishes

                        John Whitelegg



                        ----- Original Message -----
                        From: "Lee Schipper" <SCHIPPER@...>
                        To: <jay@...>; <WorldTransport@yahoogroups.com>
                        Sent: Sunday, July 23, 2006 7:01 PM
                        Subject: Re: WorldTransport Forum Comment on WTPP Vol 12, No. 3


                        > I had a great ride on the Brisbane line in 2003 * I dont think there is a
                        simple way of measuring footprints * in Australia,
                        > China, India, the majority of electric power comes from coal. Is that
                        clean?
                        >
                        > Lee Schipper
                        > Director of Research
                        > EMBARQ, the WRI Center
                        > for Sustainable Transport
                        > Washington DC
                        > +1202 729 7735
                        > www.embarq.wri.org
                        >
                        > >>> jay@... 7/23/2006 1:27 PM >>>
                        > Hi Ken,
                        >
                        > What do you think about the Bus Rapid Transit system in Brisbane, AU?
                        > While I prefer rail, it seems that the BRT system offers a lot in the
                        > way of flexibility. Also, when running on the alternative fuels or even
                        > electricity, I believe it can be very clean in regards to emissions.
                        >
                        > Although I am not versed in the impact of roads. If anyone has any
                        > insight in regards to the impact of road building vs. rail construction
                        > (and also the effects of tunneling), I would be much appreciative.
                        >
                        > Sincerely,
                        > Jay Corrales
                        > Move San Diego Board of Directors
                        > San Diego, CA, USA
                        >
                        >
                        > Ken.Crispin wrote:
                        > >
                        > > We would like to see more focus on rail rather than road, as it is the
                        > > much cleaner environmentally sustainable mode of transport that leaves
                        > > a smaller footprint on the environment also.
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        > > Ken Crispin. Project Manager.
                        > >
                        > > Citizens Environmental Advocacy Centre In'c.
                        > >
                        > > Napier. NZ.
                        > >
                        > > clean.air@... <mailto:clean.air@...>
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > The New Mobility/World Transport Agenda
                        > Consult at: http://NewMobiity.org
                        > To post message to group: WorldTransport@yahoogroups.com
                        > To subscribe: WorldTransport-subscribe@yahoogroups.com
                        > To unsubscribe: WorldTransport-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
                        >
                        > Yahoo! Groups Links
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                      • Anzir Boodoo
                        Jay, ... While it would help, the electricity requirements for electric traction of vehicles are massive. I was surprised to read that the huge solar array on
                        Message 11 of 14 , Jul 24, 2006
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                          Jay,
                          On 23 Jul 2006, at 23:35, Jay Corrales wrote:
                          > Hi Lee,
                          >
                          > Yes, I agree that currently there is a lot of dirty electricity
                          > production which would have to be considered as you look for a true
                          > alternative, but what I see in the near future is that electricity
                          > could be mostly derived from clean energy sources such as solar and
                          > wind power. I think an opportunity could exist for a bus depot
                          > with a solar panel array to charge vehicles and supply extra energy
                          > to the electricity grid.
                          >
                          > Sorry to be so off tangent now... but I also have read that
                          > electric-powered vehicles are much cheaper to maintain than
                          > internal combustion vehicles (I haven't done much research on this
                          > yet, but I believe they mention it in "Who Killed The Electric
                          > Car"). I also see the possible opportunity for the using
                          > integrated solar panels on the roof as well.
                          While it would help, the electricity requirements for electric
                          traction of vehicles are massive.

                          I was surprised to read that the huge solar array on the roof of the
                          new Berlin Hauptbahnhof station will generate at most 5% (five
                          percent) of the station's electricity needs - though with hundreds of
                          electric trains calling every day, perhaps it's not surprising at all...

                          I have been involved in an informal railway think piece for years,
                          and we've not managed to work out how to generate a railway's
                          electricity requirement "internally" without large amounts of extra
                          land for wind turbines and biomass burning. I believe even to supply
                          diesel trains with biodiesel will require a huge investment in
                          processing facilities as those that exist already are stretched to
                          capacity.

                          --
                          Anzir Boodoo MRes MILT Aff. IRO
                          transcience, 72 Staplehurst, BRACKNELL RG12 8DD
                        • Tramsol@aol.com
                          John & all I recall a conversation recently with someone who did a cost-benefit analysis on alternative uses of the land used for transport infrastructure -
                          Message 12 of 14 , Jul 24, 2006
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                            John & all

                            I recall a conversation recently with someone who did a cost-benefit analysis on alternative uses of the land used for transport infrastructure - neatly summed up by a member of Manchester Airport's Ground Transport Planning team who said their policy on reducing the amount of car parking available for a growing number of passengers & staff using the site "We get a better return on the land when it is used for retail and hotels instead of car parking" - can we put figures to this?

                            Maybe we can as the last days of the GLC saw some studies carried out on major corridors like the A41 Finchley Road where residential roads had been buldozed to create a 6-8 lane dual carriageway out to the M1.  I cannot recall exactly which review showed a positive and which one showed a neutral figure for which corridor, but in essence it would actually be a profitable exercise to rip up the second carriageway and rebuild the houses, which would be 'worth' more than the road...  Some of the more venerable contributors might recall this in greater detail?

                            In this part of Glasgow a complete residential building (town house/tenement) of 4-5 floors prior to refurbishment seems to be getting in excess of £1m, and eyeing up the great swathe of land taken out by the City Centre motorway I just wonder how the sums might work out today, when compared to the 1960's when property in the area was cheap.

                            Dave Holladay
                            Glasgow

                          • Tramsol@aol.com
                            In a message dated 7/24/2006 2:29:29 PM British Summer Time, ... Maybe a return to the external combustion engine where heat is generated and used at the
                            Message 13 of 14 , Jul 24, 2006
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                              In a message dated 7/24/2006 2:29:29 PM British Summer Time, ab@... writes:

                              I believe even to supply 
                              diesel trains with biodiesel will require a huge investment in 
                              processing facilities as those that exist already are stretched to 
                              capacity.


                              Maybe a return to the external combustion engine where heat is generated and used at the driving mechanism - having recently listened to a piece on BBC Radio 4 about the modern steam engine (purer water, higher pressure, no boiler scale, and full secondary combustion with injected steam in the firebox to better manage the burning process).  Do I see the ghost of Bulleid and the Leader Class.....

                              Dave Holladay
                              Glasgow

                            • Michael Yeates
                              Date: Tue, 25 Jul 2006 10:19:15 +1000 To: WorldTransport@yahoogroups.com From: Michael Yeates Subject: Re: WorldTransport Forum Comment on
                              Message 14 of 14 , Jul 28, 2006
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                                Date: Tue, 25 Jul 2006 10:19:15 +1000

                                As a resident of Brisbane, I hope nobody takes offence at the following and hope it will result in ongoing detailed critical review rather than international conferences and other promotional material that promotes our Busways without reference to impacts and context.

                                I totally agree with the points John raises below which were to all intents completely ignored in the initial decisions by government in regard to transport planning and provision in SEQ (including the Busways) and thus continue to be ignored ..

                                So Brisbane has Busways, but it is also about to spend over $2 billion on a tunnel for more convenient travel by car ... and there are several more tunnels planned .. also for cars ...!  This of course was predictable ... see http://www.yeatesit.biz/transfiles/busways.pdf

                                Did anybody consider how this would impact on children walking or cycling to school, to illustrate just one of John's points below?

                                Put simply, it is far too easy to focus on the easier or more politically acceptable parts of integrated planning rather than "integrate" the complexity of issues ... and in many ways, the energy<>pollution issues are relatively easy for as is well known, if not often accepted by politicians and other interested decision makers, traffic prediction is not exactly accurate or even reasonably reliable.

                                Put another way, as Bent Flyvbjerg et al and others have shown, these big projects rarely if ever have legitimate well researched and well supported justification that is then monitored and evaluated critically and independently over time so not surprisingly the benefits are exaggerated and the costs underestimated or ignored ... exactly what is happening in Brisbane with its billion dollar Busways and billion dollar tunnels ... paradoxically, all designed (not necessarily intentionally or explicitly) for more cars on the roads ....
                                 
                                For example soon after the first Busway was opened, an informal platform survey found that most of the passengers either (i) worked at or near the outer end major regional retail centre (ie Garden City at Upper Mt Gravatt) and were primarily using the busway for additional non-essential trips that they would never have done before the Busway or (ii) drove to the Busway often a longer distance than previously (another form of induced travel) and quite a few of these had transferred from using rail (30 minute frequency) to using the much higher frequency buses on the Busway but relying on the very large and very expensive Park'n'Ride parking because there was so little improvement in service levels of local buses as a result of the Busway. Why? Because virtually all the buses went into the CBD on the Busway.
                                 
                                Aside from recent transport conferences held in Brisbane with a focus on the Busways, there has been an enormous effort put into publicising the Busways in Brisbane and beyond.

                                But at the same time, there has been almost no critical review so it is not surprising that people see the aspects that have been promoted.

                                There is however some information about the busways provided via investigations by the Queensland Parliament Public Works Committee (see http://www.parliament.qld.gov.au/view/committees/committees.asp?area=PWC&LIndex=7&SubArea=PWC )

                                see PWC Report 39 and a further report (which reduced criticism) at PWC Report 42 at http://www.parliament.qld.gov.au/view/committees/committees.asp?area=PWC&LIndex=7&SubArea=reports&Bindex=3

                                Transcripts of public hearings can be found at
                                http://www.parliament.qld.gov.au/view/committees/documents/PWC/transcripts/w970212a.pdf
                                http://www.parliament.qld.gov.au/view/committees/documents/PWC/transcripts/w970911.pdf
                                http://www.parliament.qld.gov.au/view/committees/documents/PWC/transcripts/w970324.pdf

                                Also, while there has been rhetorical support for "integrated" public transport, in fact nearly 10 years later, very few buses go close to the some 70 train stations in Brisbane because the bus system still remains extremely radial ... a point further exaggerated by the Busways ... thus the buses and Busways operate in opposition to, rather than in "integrated" support of, the already high capacity rail system.

                                So not surprisingly, there is a major congestion problem with buses in the CBD approaches and an increasingly greater layby and float problem .. the solution to which is building more Busways (extensions underway in the CBD right now).

                                But like cars, more buses simply congest the roads once their useful role and performance is exceeded ... so SEQ is rapidly becoming a case study well worth considering as to whether BRT and an emphasis on buses is simply the result of conceptual thinking that sees buses as more efficient cars ... and Busways as freeways for buses ...!

                                But in addition, Brisbane now has a series of related problems ... not enough buses ... but then it is argued, there is nowhere for more buses as the CBD and approaches are already congested ...!

                                Busways are no different to freeways and motorways ... they provide a dream of unlimited capacity, flexibility and utility when opened but end up congested and in need of increased capacity ... .

                                Until the points that John makes below are also included, rail will be seen as too expensive and inflexible by those who regard buses as large cars ...

                                You might also find it useful to see what has been said eg 
                                Paul Mees at http://www.brisinst.org.au/resources/brisinst_publictrans.html
                                Peter Newman at http://www.brisinst.org.au/resources/newman_peter_busway.html
                                and some of my own articles at
                                http://www.brisinst.org.au/resources/yeates_michael_busway.html
                                http://www.brisinst.org.au/resources/yeates_michael_unsmartcity.html
                                http://www.brisinst.org.au/resources/yeates_michael_ride.html

                                These are sourced from a collection of articles at http://www.brisinst.org.au/resources/brisbane_institute_transportseries.html

                                The local newspaper is "The Courier-Mail" which has current news at http://www.couriermail.news.com.au/queensland and recent news at http://www.couriermail.news.com.au/archives

                                So if anyone wants a research topic of local<>global interest and importance, come to Brisbane and have a long critical look ... but please, if you really want to get behind the rhetoric and marketing/promotional hype, be prepared to try to travel without relying on using a car.

                                Michael Yeates
                                Brisbane
                                Australia

                                 

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