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Re: NYTimes.com Article: Op-Ed Columnist: Fly Me to the Moon

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  • emccaughrin
    ... You are being far too generous. The idea clearly being advocated by Mr. Friedman -- and an embarassing number of environmental organizations -- is that
    Message 1 of 4 , Dec 7, 2004
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      --- In carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, Christopher Miller
      <christophermiller@m...> wrote:
      >
      > I suppose, though, that a generous reading of "alternative energy
      > and conservation" might imply cutting back on -- and cutting out
      > as far as possible -- wasteful modes of transport

      You are being far too generous. The idea clearly being advocated by
      Mr. Friedman -- and an embarassing number of "environmental"
      organizations -- is that we blow billions on white elephant projects
      like "intelligent" highway systems, hydrogen highways (i.e. "21st-
      century fuel"), battery-powered hummers, etc. For politicians
      (Democrat and Republican) it is a "win-win-win" situation. They can
      say to their constituents that they are "environmental" by funding
      such programs without having to make any of the difficult decisions
      about reducing the gigantic subsidies sustaining sprawl.

      > which would imply a need for scientific research on improving
      > urban environments and reshaping the suburban landscape around
      > more intelligent transportation choices (an enormous, complex
      > task that would require a lot of experimentation and
      > modelling).

      Reearch what, exactly?

      Designing energy efficient cities and transport systems is already a
      solved problem. Off-the-shelf technology already in use today could
      eliminate America's energy deficit. But until the various structural
      problems are fixed, there is no market incentive to do so.
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