Archive | climate

Growing Awareness of Climate in Community Planning

I don’t remember how this ended up in my inbox, but the Great Plains Institute (GPI) recently published an article evaluating how Met Council-area communities are using the comprehensive planning process to address climate-related issues. As part of the state laws governing land use in the metro area, metro area municipalities are required to create […]

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Facing Dire Straits, Saint Paul Should Pull the Plug on Ayd Mill Road

It’s with no joy that I write yet another column about Ayd Mill Road, Saint Paul’s crumbling concrete albatross. I’ve been at this for years, and you are not familiar with this long saga, here’s a quick primer: A quick, legal timeline of AMR decisions from 1999 – 2010 (Neighborhoods First!) A longer, illustrated timeline […]

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Celebrating 31 Days of Winter Bicycling

Winter in Minnesota can be delightful, gorgeous, fragile, challenging, and sometimes far too gray. In January of 2018, Melissa Wenzel issued herself a challenge to a winter-weather version of April’s “30 Days of Biking.” Fellow winter bicyclists in Minnesota and around the world joined Melissa in her pledge to bike every day in January. In 2019, […]

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A Climate Emergency Means it’s Time to Stop, Drop and Roll

The City of Minneapolis has declared a climate emergency. What does it mean to be in a state of emergency? If you’re having a health emergency, you ride in an ambulance with sirens blaring. The normal rules of the road are suspended as drivers get out of the way. When your house is on fire, […]

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Join the streets.mn Climate Committee!

Are you ready to respond to our climate emergency? Are you interested in what this means for land use and transportation in particular? Join streets.mn’s newest committee this coming Sunday afternoon, January 26th, from 3:00-5:00 at CoCreatz on the Green Line. We’ll be talking about the ways streets.mn intersects with climate breakdown and how we […]

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Twenty-Seven Years of Pickup Truck Design

Former Streetsblog USA writer Angie Schmitt has recently been making the point on Twitter that, despite the extremity of our climate crisis, the transition to sustainable transportation can’t be instantaneous because of our sprawling built environment. We therefore will need both EVs (maybe including ebikes, though she doesn’t address this) and smaller/safer vehicles for people […]

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It Only Takes Seven Riders for an Electric Bus to be More CO2e-Efficient Than Hybrid Cars

As I have shared before, I drive a hybrid hatchback, a 2015 Toyota Prius. To reduce my carbon footprint, I try to walk or scoot for many of my shorter trips, and I also check bus schedules for medium trips, like to a coffee shop in another neighborhood. It can be very frustrating, even living […]

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St. Paul Empire Builder

Trains, Planes, or Cars: Which is the Most Carbon-Efficient Way to Travel?

Many of us traveled for the holidays, and many of the Streets community shared their experiences of traveling by Amtrak. It is very true that when moving on flat ground in a straight line, trains on steel wheels and rails are the most efficient form of transportation. Rolling on steel rails reduces rolling resistance and […]

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Pushback, Once Again

  This is the context, and we all know it: • Climate change is real and already causing devastating effects • Climate change is primarily caused by CO2 • Transportation accounts for the largest part of Minnesota’s CO2 increase • We need to act now Given that, let’s say you have a street (well, more […]

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It Takes 66,379 Miles for an Electric Car to Have Lower Emissions Than Hybrid

In 2020, Tesla is expected to release the Model Y, a battery-electric hatchback “SUV” that will compete with the recently announced Ford Mustang Mach-E and other crossover-type electric fastbacks. Putting aside all the arguments why electric cars will not save the planet in general, let’s explore whether these new family wagons are even better than […]

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