March 2, 2021

Study Shows Why Cities Need to Encourage Cycling to Drastically Lower Emissions

While everyone knows that active transportation is good for you, there has been little data on exactly how much carbon emissions are lowered by walking, biking or taking public transit.

A new study published in Elsevier looked at the climate change impact of daily commuting using active travel. By gathering travel activity information in seven European cities  this study found that car travel contributed seventy percent to CO2 emissions across different modes and cycling contributed to just one percent.

Christian Brand at Oxford University and twenty other researchers concluded that if a car driver or passenger changed from a car to a bicycle they decreased “life cycle” CO2 emissions by 3.2 kilograms of CO2 daily.

This study looked at data from several cities instead of just one, and also took into account “full life cycle impacts” of both active and vehicular travel. Using life cycle analysis cycling is not “zero-carbon” emissions because of the creation, maintenance and eventual trashing of bikes, and any associated batteries and motors. The researchers did note that life cycle emissions for passenger vehicle travelled are ten times higher than that of cyclists.

The researchers looked at “short to medium sized trips, ” typically 2 km for walking, 5 km for cycling and 10 km for e-biking ” It is these short trips that “contribute disproportionately” to emissions when conducted by vehicle because of cold engine starts.

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Graphic artist and writer Stanley Woodvine has a good eye for design and form and he has achieved what so many has wished for: he has “righted”  Bjarke Ingel’s Vancouver House. Not once, but twice.

As Mr. Woodvine writes on his twitter account at @sqwabb  

“seen from Fairview, the scoop out of the lower East side of Vancouver House tower condo has been filled by a perfectly rectilinear tower newly positioned behind it”.

Using his camera at Alder and 11th Avenue, Mr. Woodvine completes the work in the photo below stating:

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This webinar date was changed  due to the inclement weather in the United States.

It is now rescheduled to:

Date:Thursday March 4, 2021

Time: 10:15 Pacific Time

If you have previously registered you will receive a link.

If you have not previously registered, you can register by clicking this link.

Journalist Angie Schmitt discusses her new book, “Right of Way: Race, Class, and the Silent Epidemic of Pedestrian Deaths in America.”

“Right of Way” unveils a crisis that is rooted in both inequality and the undeterred reign of the automobile in our cities. It challenges us to imagine and demand safer and more equitable cities, where no one is expendable. \

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Here’s a recommendation for a book I haven’t even finished yet.

Yes, a whole book about street addressing.  It’s like one of those long-form New Yorker articles on a subject you never thought about and can’t imagine would be of sustained interest, like surveying.  You would be wrong.

It begins among the unaddressed in Kolkata and ends … well, I don’t know yet.  This is not a book to rush.  I save each chapter to consume one at a time, like selecting a chocolate in a particularly tempting box.  Nor are there a lot of empty calories. I’ve gained all kinds of related information and insights (why American cities use numbers to name streets, why Japanese don’t use names at all).

Indeed, I wish I had read the chapter on Korea and Japan (“Must streets be named?”) before visiting Tokyo.  I would have seen the city in a different way, more like the Japanese see their cities (and the world).

This book is about culture, not just numbers (or lack of them), and why urbanism is such a key to understanding the issues (like race and power) that capture our attention today.

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