Archive | Environment

Minneapolis Skyline

Chart of the Day: Minneapolis Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Citywide Activities

Via the City of Minneapolis, here is a chart of greenhouse gas emissions from citywide activities. Greenhouse gas emissions decreased 3.1% in 2016 compared to the 2015. Increases in emissions from natural gas consumption, solid waste, and wastewater were offset by decreases in emissions from electricity consumption and on-road transportation. The City adopted goals in […]

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Observed Global Temperature Change

Everyone’s 2040 Plan Sucks

There have been a lot of posts about the Minneapolis 2040 Comp Plan, including many, many public hearings in which YIMBYs and NIMBYs stand up and fight for more housing, or less housing, or neighborhood character. Every city in the Met Council is supposed to have a 2040 plan. Meanwhile, we are all frogs in […]

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Sustainable Saint Paul?

Once upon a time, sometime in 1989, the city of Saint Paul drafted a sustainable take-out container ordinance. It wasn’t called that, as the terms “sustainable” and “sustainability” weren’t widely used yet.  It was written to help achieve city, county and state recycling and waste reduction goals through increasing the types of take out containers […]

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Chart of the Day: Minnesota Energy Input and Output Flows, 2014

Here’s a fun chart to stare at for long hours. It’s the LIvermore labs energy chart! This is the most recent version available at the state level (though there is one made at the national scale using 2017 info). It might look familiar, as Adam Miller put up a similar chart a year and a […]

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Fight Climate Breakdown by Joining the streets.mn Board!

I don’t know how to write this post to ask you to join the streets.mn board. This is supposed to be my rousing invitation, and every time I start typing, I find myself writing about the IPCC instead. But that’s not actually all that far off. Climate change–our role in causing it, the consequences we […]

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Car-Free Day Car-toons

Saturday, September 22 is World Car-Free Day! OurStreets Minneapolis, The Minneapolis Downtown Council and a few local groups are celebrating it on Friday, September 21st. In honor of this blessed event, I’m posting a few car-toons. The U.S.A. (including Minnesota) remain “The Land of the Cars!” Here’s a new American flag proposal so outsiders will […]

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Driverless Cars and the Cult of Technology

We constantly hear that driverless cars are just around the corner. We’re told they will revolutionize transportation and enable us to continue using our car-based transport and land-use system. If they’re made by Tesla, they’ll be powered by magic, solar-powered, super efficient batteries and we’ll all be able to keep living our hyper-mobile, hyper-consumptive lifestyles […]

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Hall’s Island. Not an Island. Ok, an Island Again

I first visited Hall’s Island first before it was and island, for the 2nd time. To me it was a big parcel of land that Wilco played at a couple years ago. Why was it an island over 50 years ago, why not in 2016, and why again today? A brief history. The first known survey of […]

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Streets Without Trees are Dangerous

With more cities developing Vision Zero initiatives to eliminate road traffic fatalities, more people are seeing the way streets that are designed as a life-and-death issue. That entails seeing things that used to look fairly benign – a 13′ lane width, for example – as hazardous. We should start seeing the absence of mature street […]

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Chart of the Day: Share of New Homes with Central Air Conditioning, 1970 – Present

An evergreen chart here from the New York Times about a seasonal (in Minnesota anyway) amenity that has radically transformed our cities and homes for the better and for the worse. Here is the chart showing the trend in the Midwest and other regions of the US: I grew up in a house with central […]

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