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Re: Car-free cities and jobs

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  • Mike Neuman
    15,000 Parishaners died in August from the record setting heat-wave that reportedly took the lives of over 35,000 Europeans last summer. Unless Paris invests
    Message 1 of 23 , Nov 7, 2003
      15,000 Parishaners died in August from the record setting heat-wave
      that reportedly took the lives of over 35,000 Europeans last summer.
      Unless Paris invests heavily in air conditioning (and supplying the
      electricity for it), I wouldn't advise anyone over 60 moving there
      any time soon. Thanks to the U.S. and other heavy fossil fuel
      burning countries of the world, the possibility of more of these
      tragedies happening in the world will grow with each passing year,
      especially in cities vulnerable to "heat island" effects.


      --- In carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, "mauk_mcamuk" <mauk2@h...>
      wrote:
      > You are absolutely right!
      >
      > Now, what are we supposed to do with the three billion additional
      > people expected to share the world with us by 2050?
      >
      > I think Paris might be full...... :)
      >
      >
      > >
      > > It's important to remember that millions of people all over the
      > world
      > > already live in centuries-old carfree cities.
    • prometeus57
      ... What s the effect of Paris thousands of trees? Can more be planted / the buildings be greened somehow?
      Message 2 of 23 , Nov 7, 2003
        --- In carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, "Mike Neuman" <mtneuman@j...>
        wrote:
        > 15,000 Parishaners died in August from the record setting heat-wave
        > that reportedly took the lives of over 35,000 Europeans last summer.
        > Unless Paris invests heavily in air conditioning (and supplying the
        > electricity for it), I wouldn't advise anyone over 60 moving there

        What's the effect of Paris' thousands of trees? Can more be planted /
        the buildings be greened somehow?
      • mauk_mcamuk
        ... Hrrrrrm... Would it be possible to pitch a carfree city as a planned urban development, or essentially a large suburb? In other words, have the large
        Message 3 of 23 , Nov 7, 2003
          > Not necessarily so. I found two locations in the Netherlands, one
          > of the most densely populated nations in the world, where the
          > Reference Design could be built without significant alteration.
          > It's true that in mountainous regions the good spaces may be
          > mostly taken, but anywhere we're building suburbs today is a
          > potential spot for a carfree city. The spaces don't need to be huge
          > in order to support a large population.
          >

          Hrrrrrm... Would it be possible to pitch a "carfree city" as a
          planned urban development, or essentially a large suburb? In other
          words, have the large industrial areas contain MAJOR parking areas at
          first, and essentially let the first few developments grow using a
          nearby city as the economic base. After you get a few neighborhoods
          established, with a little luck, it would become self-sustaining.



          > >2) Building a city from scratch requires a formidable pile of
          capital.
          >
          > So does any other development project; billion-dollar projects are
          > now routine. The banks have the money; what's required is a
          developer
          > who believes in the idea and can convince a bank to fund it. This is
          > well within the realm of possibility.
          >

          Have you done any work on how much capital it would take? more
          importantly, how would you pay that capital back? Taxes on
          residents?
        • Mike Neuman
          I suppose more trees in the cities would help, if nothing else but to not make things worse with more and more pavement. Spraying with cool water also keeps
          Message 4 of 23 , Nov 7, 2003
            I suppose more trees in the cities would help, if nothing else but to
            not make things worse with more and more pavement.

            Spraying with cool water also keeps people's internal temperatures
            down. Other ways to stay cool include spending more time in the
            basement (if you have one), staying out of the sun, avoiding
            strenuous physical activities and drinking fluids. But air
            conditioning will become key for many areas, as it has already for
            many metropolitan areas located in the warmer climates.

            There doesn't appear to be much else one can do, other than to hope
            such a heat wave doesn't occur again, in Europe or elsewhere, at
            least in the near future.

            Chances are increasing that it will, of course, as global warming
            continues to worsen. Cities all over the Northern Hemisphere should
            be preparing right now for the potential for more unusually hot
            weather to possibly occur again next summer. If we don't get it,
            that would be great. But if we do get it, we had best be prepared
            for it. Otherwise, what happened in Paris this past August could be
            repeated, many times over, in many other cities. That
            would be catastrophic.

            Unfortunately, this problem is going to get much worse in time. That
            is what 999 scientist out of 1,000 will tell you if they are informed
            at all in this area. (The one remaining will have been paid by the
            fossil fuel/transportation/media industries to tell you otherwise.)

            Every year, global warming will get worse and worse. It has been
            already, and there is no reason to believe things will not continue
            to deteriorate in time.

            Yet most of the people in government, especially at the federal
            agency level in the U.S., will still say they fail to see the problem
            coming, or becoming that serious at any time soon. They are wrong.

            Some might think that, but they won't volunteer to talk about it,
            much less listen to someone else who tries to press on them the need
            to become concerned about it. Bob Dylan called it "killing the
            prophets".

            I know a man who has been working for the National Weather Service
            in this country for 25 years. He and I talked about this problem
            back in January 2000. It was clear to us then, after having read many
            of the studies and having specialized in climate related fields at
            the university, that this was going to be a huge, huge problem if
            society didn't start to act to reduce greenhouse gas emissions
            levels, almost right away. We could tell that then. At this same
            time, Dan Rather from CBS news did a program on his nightly news show
            that raised the issue of the growing problem with the warming
            climate. You could tell he was concerned. Even later outgoing
            president Clinton said it was going to be the most important issue of
            the century.

            The man I know started to raise this issue to his superiors at the
            National Weather Service about four years ago. They would have
            nothing to do with it. Global warming was not in their job
            description.

            So the guy send an email to people in Washington about it, about the
            end of January 2000 as I recall. That's when the sh-- hit the fan -
            but just for him, of course. The people in Washington who run the
            National Weather Service - a guy named Jack Kelly, (now deputy
            director of NOAA) & others - they wouldn't stand for it. Who does
            one of our employees think he is telling us in Washington we had
            better stop ignoring a big problem like global warming in our
            weather and flooding prediction policies? (they said.)

            Over time, they awarded the guy 3 separate disciplinary suspensions
            (without pay of course).

            With NOAA and the National Weather Service now under the "new"
            administration (Global Warmer Bush, etc.), things haven't gotten any
            better. In fact, they are worse now than ever. He is preparing now
            for reactionary measures again -- probably dismissal --
            because he went ahead and issued his own public news release, on a
            study he recently completed that provides increasing evidence of more
            rapid global warming now than ever before. He put out $500 of his own
            money to do it even. And now he's probably going to loose his job as
            well, only a couple of years away from retirement.

            I could go on with more details about this, but this forum doesn't
            seem to be the correct place to do that. It's just that it turns my
            stomach. Here's a guy who had no other motive than to speak up about
            an impending threat to all of us - to raise awareness of the problem
            so others would start to take the issue more seriously and work
            constructively to solve it. Yet the people he raises the problem to
            dump all over him for it. These are people in high places of our
            government, people who are paid generously with public money to
            protect the public's welfare in a matter as universally important to
            everyone as the climate and weather. Blame them -- not the
            scientists, messengers and profits for this problem. Those bums
            should have been thrown out before Bush took office. Just look what
            they have (not) done!

            --- In carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, "prometeus57"
            <prometeus57@y...> wrote:
            > --- In carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, "Mike Neuman"
            <mtneuman@j...>
            > wrote:
            > > 15,000 Parishaners died in August from the record setting heat-
            wave
            > > that reportedly took the lives of over 35,000 Europeans last
            summer.
            > > Unless Paris invests heavily in air conditioning (and supplying
            the
            > > electricity for it), I wouldn't advise anyone over 60 moving
            there
            >
            > What's the effect of Paris' thousands of trees? Can more be
            planted /
            > the buildings be greened somehow?
          • Jym Dyer
            ... =v= Deciduous trees shade nearby buildings in the summer and let sunlight shine through in the winter. It s a good idea to plant more. I like the green
            Message 5 of 23 , Nov 7, 2003
              > What's the effect of Paris' thousands of trees? Can more
              > be planted / the buildings be greened somehow?

              =v= Deciduous trees shade nearby buildings in the summer and let
              sunlight shine through in the winter. It's a good idea to plant
              more. I like the "green roofs" approach, as well.

              =v= And oh yeah, gotta stop all these cars from heating up the
              planet in the first place.
              <_Jym_>
            • Bijan Soleymani
              ... I realize that the world is probably getting warmer, but I ve been to Paris twice (both times in the summer) and have to say that the weather was much
              Message 6 of 23 , Nov 7, 2003
                "Mike Neuman" <mtneuman@...> writes:

                > 15,000 Parishaners died in August from the record setting heat-wave
                > that reportedly took the lives of over 35,000 Europeans last summer.
                > Unless Paris invests heavily in air conditioning (and supplying the
                > electricity for it), I wouldn't advise anyone over 60 moving there
                > any time soon. Thanks to the U.S. and other heavy fossil fuel
                > burning countries of the world, the possibility of more of these
                > tragedies happening in the world will grow with each passing year,
                > especially in cities vulnerable to "heat island" effects.

                I realize that the world is probably getting warmer, but I've been to
                Paris twice (both times in the summer) and have to say that the
                weather was much better (cooler) than the weather where I live. And
                that happens to be Montreal, Canada :) Maybe it's less humid...

                Bijan
                --
                Bijan Soleymani <bijan@...>
                http://www.crasseux.com
              • Bijan Soleymani
                ... They could charge the residents for the convenience of living on their development. This is called rent. Another option is selling the housing units to the
                Message 7 of 23 , Nov 7, 2003
                  "mauk_mcamuk" <mauk2@...> writes:

                  >> >2) Building a city from scratch requires a formidable pile of
                  > capital.
                  >>
                  >> So does any other development project; billion-dollar projects are
                  >> now routine. The banks have the money; what's required is a
                  > developer
                  >> who believes in the idea and can convince a bank to fund it. This is
                  >> well within the realm of possibility.
                  >>
                  >
                  > Have you done any work on how much capital it would take? more
                  > importantly, how would you pay that capital back? Taxes on
                  > residents?

                  They could charge the residents for the convenience of living on their
                  development. This is called rent. Another option is selling the
                  housing units to the residents and having the banks lend them the
                  money: mortgage. :)

                  The problem isn't that there is no money to be made in carfree cities,
                  but that it's easier for developpers to build suburban sprawl. It's
                  easy, it's standardized, doesn't require as much capital, etc.

                  Bijan
                  --
                  Bijan Soleymani <bijan@...>
                  http://www.crasseux.com
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