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Global Warming: How Does Your City Rate?

Here’s a sweet little bit of vindication for a city boy surrounded by farmers and back-to-the-landers:

At first glance, cities may appear to be a big source of the greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming. But new research by CNT, which compares greenhouse gas emissions of city and suburban households, yields some surprising results.

CNT looked at emissions of carbon dioxide, a key greenhouse gas, stemming from household vehicle travel in 55 metropolitan areas across the U.S. When measured on a per household basis, it found that the transportation-related emissions of people living in cities and compact neighborhoods can be nearly 70% less than those living in suburbs. See how this compares in your region at our newly redesigned Housing + Transportation Affordability Index site.

[Emphasis mine.]

So, nyeh.

The real interesting bit, though, is the tools Center for Neighborhood Technology provides for checking out your area’s CO2 emissions relative to population (“CO2 per acre” vs. “CO2 per household”).

What is Location Efficiency?

While the concept of energy efficiency is a familiar term, locations can be efficient too. Compact neighborhoods with walkable streets, access to transit, and a wide variety of stores and services have high location efficiency. They require less time, money, and greenhouse gas emissions for residents to meet their everyday travel requirements.

The savings add up for households and communities. Transportation costs can range from 15% of household income in location efficient neighborhoods to over 28% in inefficient locations. Greenhouse gas emissions fluctuate too, depending on household reliance on costly, carbon-intensive automobile travel.

As they add more and more cities in the coming months, more people will be able to view the carbon impact of their own homesteads, as well as the impact of gas prices.


10 Books to Curl Up With This Winter

William Wordsworth was right when he said, “Nature never did betray the heart that loved her.” Nevertheless, the cold, dark days of winter can still get the best of even Nature’s most tenderhearted admirer. What’s one to do? We here at Chelsea Green have concocted the perfect cabin fever remedy with our suggested winter reading […] Read More..

50 Low-Cost, Low-Tech Solutions to Save the Planet

Tired of watching people spend so much time thinking up big solutions to big problems that it has a paralyzing effect on taking action? If you’re like author Courtney White, the answer is yes. That’s why in Two Percent Solutions for the Planet, he takes readers on a journey to show how low-cost, easy-to-implement solutions […] Read More..

Beyond the War on Invasive Species – Review in Permaculture Design Magazine

This review was originally published in Permaculture Design, Issue #97, “Life on the Edge,” Fall 2015; www.PermacultureDesignMagazine.com Look in the Mirror Review by Peter Bane For its extensive scholarship, clear voice, and impassioned, hopeful message, this book is a joy to read—a slim but beautifully written teaching text which uses permaculture and ecosystem science as a lens for viewing the […] Read More..

5 Common Invasive Species and How to Manage Them

Last week, we asked authors Tao Orion and Katrina Blair to share alternative approaches to managing five different plant species commonly held to be “invasive.” St. John’s Wort, Garlic Mustard, Thistle, Oxeye Daisy, and Kudzu are often dismissed as annoyances at best and the target of aggressive eradication with harmful chemicals at worst. Orion and […] Read More..

What in the World is a Pawpaw?

Have you heard of the pawpaw? A few generations ago, most would say “yes!” You could ask just about anyone and they could tell you what this fruit looked and tasted like, and more importantly, where to find it. But today, the pawpaw remains a mystery to some and entirely unknown to others. In Pawpaw: […] Read More..
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