Thursday, September 15, 2005

Green Cities

I was a speaker at a Sustainable Communities Conference in Vermont. The organizers took two busloads of participants to admire a ... factory that produces towers for wind electric generators. Hard to get greener that that.

But there was a problem: it took us 20 minutes on the highway to get there. And, when we arrived, there was no other building in sight on the rolling landscape of broad agricultural fields.

“Wouldn’t it be more fun,” I asked the company tour guide, “if instead of driving way out to this splendid isolation and back every day, you could just walk out the factory door and bike over to a class or back to your residence?” Here was a beautifully designed solar building with state-of-the-art natural lighting and insulation, constructed so the residents would consume almost no energy — except for the hundreds of gallons of gasoline they burned in their cars every day to get there!

The quote is from Richard Register's article "Green Cities and the End of the Age of Oil" in the CommonGround US green magazine. It argues forcefully that regenerative energies are just one half of what is needed, another is public transportation and changing settlement structure.


At 6:07 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

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