Chelsea Green Publishing

Chelsea Green Blog

LISTEN: James McCommons on WPR’s Joy Cardin Show

Whatever happened to passenger rail?

There was a time in the US when passenger rail was king. But then came Henry Ford and the rise of the automobile, the interstate highway system and cheap gasoline, and passenger rail became something of a relic. Car-choked freeways became the symbol of progress while trains were seen as a quaint throwback.

Meanwhile, other countries have developed networks of high-speed bullet trains that put our woefully inadequate passenger rail to shame. But, says James McCommons, author of Waiting on a Train: The Embattled Future of Passenger Rail Service, that may be changing.

From WPR’s Joy Cardin program:

Joy Cardin: What Happened?

James McCommons: We started to build a road system beginning in the 1920s that sort of paralleled the passenger rail network, and of course aviation came in in the 50s, the interstate highway system was really the stake in the heart of the passenger rail system, and we just moved away from the rail to cars. And a lot of freight as well. So by the late 1960s, early ’70s, the railroads in general were in bad shape, and Amtrak was created as a way to save some freight trains, but mostly to save the freight railroads. Many of them were going into bankruptcy because they were losing so much money on passenger service.

Listen Now

Visit Joy Cardin on WPR, Wisconsin Public Radio.

 

Related Articles:


Chelsea Green Weekly for May 5, 2017

Ever wonder what your favorite Chelsea Green authors do between writing groundbreaking–both literally and figuratively–books? Here are the best links and resources for your weekend reading pleasure. Let’s start with The Alzheimer’s Antidote. The Alzheimer’s Antidote Amy Berger has been making the rounds on the health, wellness, and fitness circuit, explaining the theories behind her revolutionary […] Read More

How to Make Biochar

Doing some spring cleaning around your property? By making biochar from brush and other hard-to-compost organic material, you can improve soil—it enhances nutrient availability and also enables soil to retain nutrients longer. This excerpt from The New Farmer’s Almanac, Volume 3, explains how to get started. To make biochar right in your garden, start by […] Read More

The 10 Steps that Establish Your Baby’s Microbiome

Research is emerging almost daily on the role of the microbiome in human health. But how do we acquire this mysterious community of microbes and more importantly how do we make sure the good bacteria outnumber the bad? According to a new book by Toni Harman and Alex Wakeford, Your Baby’s Microbiome, it all starts […] Read More

Prepare! Keep a Grab-n-Go Survival Kit Handy

Are you prepared in the event of a sudden emergency? Blizzard, earthquake, insurrection after the inauguration? We know a lot of people are wondering what’s coming next in the US, as well as the world, given terrorism, politics, and global warming, among other threats. In this excerpt from When Technology Fails, a popular book on […] Read More

Chelsea Green: In the Media 2016

Oh, 2016. Where did the time go? Each year, Chelsea Green receives hundreds of mentions (well over 1000 in 2016) in the media both big and small. From interviews, to excerpts, to opinion pieces by authors we’re always working to make sure that the mission and message of each book is spread far and wide. […] Read More
+1
Tweet
Share
Share
Pin