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Sustainability benefits from predictability

July 26, 2008

I believe that people must have a long term view to support sustainability.  Unfortunately, this is not a natural state for most of us raised in an immediate gratification culture.

This point was doubly reinforced recently.  First, Matthew Simmons comments about creating a oil price floor to allow investors to make long term plans.  Second, a conversation with a municipal / civil engineering friend about Austin’s commuter rail vs. buses.  He said that rail project build a sustainable community around them because the businesses and residents can count on the transportation asset.  The exact same infrastructure using buses would not create the community because buses are not community assets.

Rail project create sustainable communities, buses do not.

Rail project create sustainable communities, buses do not.

BTW: I found another interesting link from AutoBlogGreen about a Japanese project to turn their rail beds into green spaces.  They cited a dramatic drop in temperature (140 vs 95) between road and greened rail.  Just the place for a picnic Father Bear!

Green space dramatically lowers surface temperture

Green space dramatically lowers surface temperature

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