Tuesday, October 20, 2015

In 2004, 45% of automotive CO2 emission came from the US -- 5% of world population

The United States has 5% of the world’s population and 30% of the world’s automobiles, but it contributes 45% of the world’s automotive CO2 emissions.

In 2004, U.S. cars and light trucks emitted 314 million metric tons of carbon-equivalent (MMTc). That equals the amount of carbon in a coal train 50,000 miles long—enough to stretch 17 times between New York and San Francisco. In fact, the amount of CO2 emitted from oil used for transportation in the United States is similar to the amount from coal used to generate electricity.

Friday, October 9, 2015

How #publictransit is falsely framed as dangerous, unpleasant

Despite its relative safety, many people consider public transit dangerous and are reluctant to use it or support its expansion in their community (Ferrell, Mathur, and Mendoza 2008; Kennedy 2008). Several factors may contribute to this exaggerated fear. Transit travel requires passengers to be confined with strangers in sometimes crowded and uncomfortable vehicles and stations. Although most passengers are responsible, considerate, and clean, a (usually small) portion is anti-social, rude, and dirty. This can cause feelings of powerlessness, discomfort, and insecurity.

Disproportionate media coverage also can stimulate transit fear. Because transit accidents and assaults are infrequent, they tend to receive significant media coverage (Martin 2011). A fatal train or bus crash, or transit terrorism attack, often produces intense national and international media coverage, whereas fatal automobile crashes are so common they are usually reported only locally.

In addition, transit organizations can unintentionally increase fear with safety and security messages that emphasize dangers, including dramatic but unlikely threats such as terrorism, without counterbalancing messages about transit’s overall safety, such as those illustrated in Figure 9.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

The costs of not having #publictransit, job turnover.

Local transportation officals react to Ball State study on public bus systems: "The study, which was published in the journal Urban Studies, analyzed employee turnover rates between 1998 and 2010 in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin counties. The research compared counties with between 50,000 to 125,000 people with and without bus transit systems.

Researchers found that a fixed-route bus system in a community reduced annual manufacturing turnover by 1,100 to 1,200 jobs and annual turnover costs by $5.3 million to $6.1 million. In retailing, the turnover of employees was reduced by 900 to 1,000 jobs annually while yearly turnover costs were cut by $1.7 to $1.9 million."

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Plan for free public transport (German)

Clara kann nachts nicht gut schlafen. Die vielen Autos, die bis spät in der Nacht vor ihrem Fenster vorbeifahren, sind einfach zu laut. Hier, an der autobahnähnlichen Ausfallstraße, sind die Mieten günstig, aber der Preis ist hoch: Lärm- und Schadstoffbelastung ruinieren ihre Gesundheit. Aber auch ihre Chefin, die sich eine Wohnung in bester Innenstadtlage leisten kann, klagt über den Autolärm. Es wäre so schön auf ihrem Balkon, wenn man sich dort doch wenigstens in normaler Lautstärke unterhalten könnte.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

The Energy Trap

Do the Math: "We could use any number for the decline rate in our analysis, but I’ll actually soften the effect to a 2% annual decline to illustrate that we run into problems even at a modest rate of decline. By itself, a 2% decline year after year—while sounding mild—would send our growth-based economy into a tailspin. As detailed in a previous post, across-the-board efficiency improvements cannot tread water against a rate as high as 2% per year. As we’ll see next, the Energy Trap just makes things worse."