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Re: Trains, Buses and Automobiles (was "Paradigm Shift in Houston:)

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  • Mike Neuman
    Excellent comments by Louis-Luc, but there is plenty of evidence on the global warming problem now to show that waiting for the day we burn up all the oil will
    Message 1 of 4 , Jul 9, 2003
      Excellent comments by Louis-Luc, but there is plenty of evidence on
      the global warming problem now to show that waiting for the day we
      burn up all the oil will doom us to ever increasingly hot and humid
      temperatures, (as existed on the planet during the time the
      permafrost region was formed). It could very well get much hotter
      than that if we continue our present fossil fuel burning dependent
      lifestyles in the U.S. and other developed and developing countries
      of the world. Our planet could ultimately turn into a wasteland, with
      no water and no plant and animal life possible, as scientists say
      happened on Venus years ago, when Venus' atmosphere experienced a
      runaway greenhouse effect, and its oceans of water simmered away.

      No, this is not scare mongering, as many of the global warming
      skeptics would argue passionate environmentalists like to do. The
      potential for this scenario playing itself out on Venus's twin
      planet, Earth, is very real.

      This is not to say temperatures on Earth will reach levels near 900
      degrees Fareighnheit as presently exist on Venus, the hottest planet
      in the solar system. Earth's temperature presently averages about 50
      degrees F. All it would take would be a doubling of so of that to
      wipe out all life on the planet.

      Scientific modeling of what our future climate will be like BY the
      turn of the century if we continue to operate under the current
      administration's "business as usual" approach to addressing
      (ignoring) the issue of climate change is that summertime
      temperature's in Wisconsin could be close to 20 degrees F. in summer,
      with higher humidity levels as well. Such increases in temperature
      levels in the already hot summer months will be dead for human and
      other forms of animal and plant life, and will destroy much
      infrastructure in cities and rural areas as well. Such is the legacy
      we are going to be leaving to the children of today --many of whom
      will still be alive by the turn of the century -- and of tomorrow, if
      we continue to do business as usual, without taking appropriate major
      and significant actions now to reduce fossil fuel burning.

      The time to begin cutting back on oil burning in cars and other
      motorized vehicles is now. There are basically only two ways of
      doing that, both of which should be done now: (1) greatly improve
      energy efficiency in motorized vehicles; (2) greatly reduce our use
      of motorized vehicles, preferably to emergency uses only, if possible.

      Here's a way that might be achieved:

      Someone once said there is "no free lunch" when it comes to using and
      polluting the environment. The time to conserve and preserve the
      environment, by greatly reducing fossil fuel burning in vehicles,
      homes and recreational use is now, before the pathetic condition of
      being "too late" arrives.

      "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that
      - Martin Luther King, Jr.

      --- In carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, "Louis-Luc" <exqmtl@a...>

      > What I see and feel is America is "Auto-Destructing"
      > itself.
      > If nothing is done, the society is to be destroyed by
      > its automobiles sooner or later. I'm just awaiting the
      > day where oil become rare and suburbs will die unless
      > some rail transit will offer a link to town or at least
      > some place where you can find services/goods.
      > Houses more than 10-minutes away (by foot, confirming
      > implicit mode of transit) from everywhere and big-box stores in a
      > sea of cars will eventually become phantom places
      > unless something is done NOW.
      > Car culture is to pay for its nuisance sooner or later.
      > Thinking about the stubbornness of some car dependant
      > gov't, society, or individuals, I'm thinking it might
      > be faster to let them burn oil as fast as they can, so
      > we'll reach the end of the nightmare (for us carfree
      > people) sooner, and by our non-dependancy on cars we
      > should survive much better into the next generation, if not live
      and enjoy
      > life better, when oil is over and
      > human-scaled development is forced back in as it should have always
      > remained.
      > I don't know about future, so that's a guess for me,
      > but each time I see one of those TV ads throwing speeding beasts on
      > screen, I think it can't be that
      > way for very long now.
      > Louis-Luc
    • Mike Neuman
      Inadvertently, the post I made this morning under the Trains, Planes and Automobiles subject line had a word missing in one of the ... degrees F. in summer,
      Message 2 of 4 , Jul 9, 2003
        Inadvertently, the post I made this morning under the "Trains, Planes
        and Automobiles" subject line had a word missing in one of the
        sentences. The following was the sentence:

        > ... summertime temperature's in Wisconsin could be close to 20
        degrees F. in summer, with higher humidity levels as well....

        I meant to say summertime temperatures in Wisconsin by the end of the
        century are expected to be 20 degrees F. "hotter" than Wisconsin's
        present summertime temperatures (if current rate of greenhouse gas
        emissions continue). The source of this projected increase is from a
        study published by the Union of Concerned Scientists this past April,
        which was authored by a number of prominent global warming scientists
        from various universities around the Midwest. The study can be read
        and downloaded from the following web site:

        For your information, temperatures already reach into the 90s and
        occasionally above 100 degrees F in Wisconsin during the spring and
        summer. An increase in summertime temperatures by 20 degrees F as
        projected above will greatly add to mortality rates from heat waves
        in Wisconsin.

        The heat wave-caused mortality will be especially high in Wisconsin
        and other cities, as the so-called "heat-island effect" -- largely
        created by a city having a substantial portions of its area paved
        over with heat-absorbing cement concrete and black asphalt (primarily
        for automobile use of highways, streets, parking lots and driveways) -
        - typically causes summertime temperature levels in cities to be
        F degrees F warmer than temperatures in the non-paved areas
        surrounding cities.

        Of also increased concern is that not only do the elevated
        temperature levels in these cities contribute to potentially
        dangerous heat related public health impacts in these areas
        (especially for those having no home air conditioning, and for those
        who have to be outside for long period of time during the day), but
        also these areas typically have higher ground level ozone levels due
        to all the automobile driving in the area, which is a factor that can
        lead to increased rates of hospitalization and mortality in the
        population of asthmatic children and adults having a prior history of
        respiratory problems.

        Finally, humidity levels, as measured by dew point temperatures, have
        been increasing in essentially all regions of the country over the
        past several years. Refer to Table 4 of the article posted below on
        the Climate Archive Yahoo group:
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