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Category Archives: Climate Change

Why are American roads so dangerous?

FT.com [no paywall]: “Bad driving is probably playing a bigger role in the fatality rate than larger cars and longer journeys. Car-centrism in the US is clearly part of its road safety problem — it’s about culture more than geography. So committed are Americans to their cars that 63 per cent of people choose to drive for trips of less than a mile, compared with 16 per cent in the UK. But even after adjusting for distance driven, US fatality rates remain double the rich-world average. The main reasons American roads are so unsafe stem from how they drive, not how much. On vehicle size, there is a wealth of evidence that larger cars are more deadly to pedestrians, but the contribution of America’s bloated fleet to its fatality rates turns out to be modest. US pedestrian deaths would be roughly 10 per cent lower if all SUVs and pick-up trucks were replaced with standard-sized cars, according to a study by Justin Tyndall, assistant professor of economics at the University of Hawaii…

Using phones at the wheel is a big problem in the US, according to data from Cambridge Mobile Telematics…”

Staggering quantities of energy transition metals are winding up in the garbage bin

Grist: “To build all of the solar panels, wind turbines, electric vehiclebatteries, and other technologies necessary to fight climate change, we’re going to need a lot more metals. Mining those metals from the Earth creates damage and pollution that threaten ecosystems and communities. But there’s another potential source of the copper, nickel, aluminum, and rare-earth… Continue Reading

Unregulated water contaminants

Via Data is Plural: “Through the Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule, the Environmental Protection Agency “collect[s] data for contaminants that are suspected to be present in drinking water and do not have health-based standards set under the Safe Drinking Water Act.” The current version of the rule requires public water systems to test for lithium and… Continue Reading

Climate crisis: average world incomes to drop by nearly a fifth by 2050

The Guardian: “Average incomes will fall by almost a fifth within the next 26 years as a result of the climate crisis, according to a study that predicts the costs of damage will be six times higher than the price of limiting global heating to 2C. Rising temperatures, heavier rainfall and more frequent and intense… Continue Reading

The invisible seafaring industry that keeps the internet afloat

The Verge: “…The world’s emails, TikToks, classified memos, bank transfers, satellite surveillance, and FaceTime calls travel on cables that are about as thin as a garden hose. There are about 800,000 miles of these skinny tubes crisscrossing the Earth’s oceans, representing nearly 600 different systems, according to the industry tracking organization TeleGeography. The cables are… Continue Reading

US DOT – PROTECT Discretionary Grant Program Award Recipients

PROTECT Discretionary Grant Program Fact Sheet –  “The vision of the PROTECT Discretionary Grant Program is to fund projects that address the climate crisis by improving the resilience of the surface transportation system, including highways, public transportation, ports, and intercity passenger rail. Projects selected under this program should be grounded in the best available scientific… Continue Reading

BirdCast

USFWS Pacific “About 90-140 million birds are predicted to migrate across the U.S. each night this weekend! Lights at night can be very disorienting to birds during their long spring migration. To help prevent deadly bird collisions, turn off or dim unnecessary lights! Graphic: BirdCast The Pacific Region for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service… Continue Reading

80 Percent of Global CO2 Emissions Come From Just 57 Companies

Smithsonian Magazine: “A new analysis released last week by the international non-profit InfluenceMap reveals an overwhelmingly unequal share of fossil fuel pollution worldwide. From 2016 to 2022, 80 percent of global carbon dioxide emissions were produced by just 57 companies. Shared in the think tank’s Carbon Majors Database, which is authored by some of the… Continue Reading

Mapping America’s access to nature, neighborhood by neighborhood

Washington Post – “A city is a science experiment. What happens when we separate human beings from the environment in which they evolved? Can people be healthy without nature? The results have been bleak. Countless studies have shown that people who spend less time in nature die younger and suffer higher rates of mental and… Continue Reading

Japan Gives Washington 250 Cherry Trees as Replacements

The New York Times [unpaywalled]:  “Japan is giving the United States 250 cherry trees to replace more than 100 that will be torn up during construction around the Tidal Basin in Washington, the Japanese prime minister, Fumio Kishida, said on Wednesday. The gift honors the 250th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence,… Continue Reading

Transportation Climate Impact Index

2024 U.S. Transportation Climate Impact Index: How metros rank across 8 key factors – “With transportation still representing the top source of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the U.S., new federal funding and regulations hope to spur climate-friendly infrastructure. Meanwhile, agencies across the nation are working to drive down Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT), boost walking… Continue Reading