Archive | Environment

Map Monday: Midwestern Electricity Plants

Via the Washington Post, here’s a detail from a beautiful map of all the electricity plants in the United States, colored and sized according to type and capacity. The details for Minnesota are highlighted: I general, I guess you can say that Minnesota has a balanced energy footprint. We’re not as coal-heavy as many Midwestern states […]

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Chart of the Day: Minneapolis Electricity vs. Built Square Footage over Time

Via Brendon Slotterback’s Twitter, here’s a chart showing Minneapolis’ energy use and “built square footage” (i.e. the total amount of buildings) over time: As Slotterback says: Minneapolis’ total electricity use has declined 4% since ’06 while total square footage has increased 5.5%. At the global scale, preventing out of control climate change requires de-linking GDP […]

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Map Monday: USA Turf Grass

Next time you’re out mowing the lawn, think about this map for a second. Via (something called), here you go: The map comes from a NASA study which looks at how lawns affect the environment. Here is the key part: There is now an estimated total of 163,812 square kilometers, or more than 63,000 […]

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Chart of the Day: Minneapolis Temperature, Dew Point, Wind Direction, Precipitation Forecast

This isn’t a weather report. Well it is, but that’s not the point. Check out what MPR’s Paul Huttner’s great blog says about “climate disruption.” First your forecast: OK, that’s summer. But the real eye-raising part is Huttner’s link to the Weather Channel’s list of top 25 cities for climate disruption. For some reason, Minneapolis […]

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Looking Beyond Minnesota (But Beyond Europe, Too)

While Minneapolis, St. Paul, and Minnesota appear at the top of lists for biking, health, literacy, and other enviable qualities, we’re fortunate enough to have at least some policymakers well aware of the lessons we could still learn from our counterparts across the world. In particular, there have been many efforts to apply urban planning […]

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Map Monday: Poverty vs. Toxic Release Inventory Sites in the Philips Neighborhood

This map is old but relevant today, given the debate at City Hall about environmental justice in the Phillips neighborhood. Almost 20 years ago, a few University of Minnesota professors did a GIS-based study (back in the early days of GIS) looking at how different toxic release geographic maps compared poverty and pollution at different […]

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A Twin Cities Paving Moratorium

Last Wednesday (February 4)  I attended a public presentation by Ramsey County engineers for a proposed redesign of the Randolph and Lexington Avenue intersection. They are proposing to spend a million and a half dollars to purchase four properties on the northeast corner of the intersection and bulldoze them to make space for a dedicated […]

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