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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Paris mayor urges big cities to act on climate change
2 June 2009
Agence France Presse

Paris Mayor Bertrand Delanoe on Tuesday urged big cities to act immediately to change urban dwellers' lifestyles to help stop global warming, saying "time is of the essence."

"In the world's large cities, it's time to change the way we travel, consume and generate our energy," Delanoe told representatives of local governments at a meeting on climate change in Copenhagen.

"Time's up on the planet's ecological clock," he said, opening the three-day meeting gathering 700 mayors, local officials, and other delegates from 70 countries and aimed at finding a common position ahead of a UN climate summit in the Danish capital in December.

Delanoe hailed several cities' efforts already under way, noting that in host city Copenhagen a third of inhabitants get around on bikes and another third use public transport exclusively.

He also praised San Francisco for its bio-fuel programme that uses recycled cooking oil, and Melbourne's rapidly developing green rail network.

If future generations are to "inherit a more desirable world and halt the downward spiral of global warming, we must make the sacrifices, change our habits and volunteer extremely ambitious objectives today," he said.

He stressed the need for governments to push for research, eco-technology and innovation.

Delanoe told AFP that since the agreement on the Kyoto Protocol which cuts carbon emissions and expires in 2012, "we have been too general (in our efforts), there haven't been enough restrictions or efficiency."

The United Nations hopes to get a new global warming treaty approved in Copenhagen in December to replace the Kyoto Protocol.

That treaty should be "restrictive when it comes to ceilings, timeframes and means," Delanoe said, stressing that there must be financial solutions that enable all countries to afford climate change efforts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Seoul city announces 'green' plan
3 July 2009
The Korea Herald

The Seoul Metropolitan Government yesterday unveiled its master plan for "low carbon and green growth."

The city plans to spend a total of 45 trillion won ($35 billion) by 2030 to make Seoul one of the greenest cities on the planet.

Plans include the creation of 1 million "green jobs" and a "green market" worth 170 trillion won through the development of green technologies based on information technology, nanotechnology and biotechnology, officials said.

The green technologies deal with hydrogen fuel cells, solar batteries, green buildings, light emitting diodes, green cars and climate-change adaptation.

The city has set a goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent by 2030 from levels in 1990, and energy consumption by 20 percent from levels in 2000. It plans to increase the use of new renewable energy up to 20 percent of total energy consumption.

To achieve that goal, the city plans to enhance the energy-efficiency of all buildings which measure a minimum 2,000 square meters, by improving illumination, weatherization systems, as well as heating and cooling facilities. The target is to make 10,000 "green" buildings by 2030.

The city also plans to replace all buses and taxis with electric vehicles by 2020, and to increase the use of public transportation to 70 percent from the current 62.5 percent.

The creation of 207 kilometers of bicycle paths is also planned.

To deal with climate change, the city has created five specialized sectors to deal with infectious diseases, high temperatures, water shortages, weather damage and ecosystem disturbance.

The city will establish a new division wholly dedicated to implementing such plans, officials said.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
From rooftops and planes, scientists zoom in on carbon dioxide in NYC and other cities
19 July 2009

NEW YORK (AP) - Wade McGillis peered up at the structure propped like a high-tech stick figure -- minus the head -- on an elementary school roof. Then he examined the electronics attached to its spindly metal frame, looking out over the Harlem brownstones nearby and the skyscrapers farther away.

Within 15 minutes, a graph spiked in his office eight blocks away. The abrupt peak marked the carbon dioxide the Columbia University environmental engineering professor and three visitors had exhaled.

The spike was an anomaly, but it proved the rooftop device had done its job, helping to break down questions about global warming to a local level.

"We're unraveling the story of how carbon (dioxide) changes over the day, changes from neighborhood to neighborhood, and changes from the country to the city," said McGillis, who has set up seven sensors in and around New York City. The newest, in Central Park, was installed this spring.

The urban experiment shows a growing interest by researchers in tracking how much of the heat-trapping gas a city, neighborhood or building puts in the atmosphere, and how much the urban environment can suck out.

Some scientists hope the data might eventually help shape efforts to curb emissions of carbon dioxide -- one of the main contributors to global warming -- and measure whether such efforts are effective.

Carbon dioxide is emitted by various natural processes, including animals' breathing. But human activities -- especially burning coal, oil natural gas and other fossil fuels -- have greatly increased the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, according to the federal Environmental Protection Agency. Carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases trap heat on the planet's surface, causing a range of climate effects, many scientists and regulators say.

The rise of greenhouse gases already has increased temperatures, sea levels and heavy rains enough to affect water supplies, agriculture and health, and the effects are expected to worsen, scientists told the Obama administration in a report released last month. The report calls for more work on distinguishing human and natural factors in climate change and scaling the information down to local levels.

McGillis' monitors are in locales ranging from Harlem to rural eastern Long Island, about 80 miles away. The sensors measure carbon dioxide levels, wind speeds and other weather data every 15 minutes, submitting the data wirelessly. Readings are posted online soon after they're taken.

The monitors in Central Park and Harlem are only about two miles apart but often show notable differences in carbon dioxide levels, he said, and reflect how people and nature intertwine to affect the gases' ebb and flow.

McGillis' three-year-old project joins a growing list of efforts to keep tabs on carbon dioxide.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration now has about 70 carbon dioxide sensors around the world, many in remote areas. The agency hopes to do more carbon dioxide monitoring in cities to help test whether efforts to curb carbon emissions are effective, said Pieter Tans, who runs the monitor network.

Most power plants have been required to monitor their carbon dioxide emissions since the 1990s. Scientists have done carbon monitoring experiments of their own in Chicago, Salt Lake City and southern California, among other places.

Purdue University researcher Kevin Gurney sends a low-flying plane over Indianapolis to sample the gas in an attempt to gauge carbon dioxide emissions building by building. He combines air samples with a range of emissions, traffic and other data.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency also is seeking more local specifics on greenhouse gas emissions, and proposed requiring annual reports from about 13,000 fuel refineries, car manufacturers and other large industrial facilities.

The reporting could involve some monitoring but would largely rely on calculating emissions from burning fuel, said Bill Irving, an official in the EPA's climate change division.

"Our view is, at this stage, the advanced, rigorous calculation approaches are justified," he said.

Coal industry lobbyist Scott Segal says industrial emissions calculations are refined enough that more monitoring wouldn't add much information.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
World Bank launches 'ecological' cities programme
27 June 2009
Agence France Presse

The World Bank has launched a programme to help cities in developing countries achieve economic growth and high quality living standards without damaging the environment.

With around 90 percent of urban growth worldwide taking place in developing nations and at a rapid pace, city planners are in a race against time to put in place the right policies that will benefit future generations, the bank said.

"Urbanisation in developing countries may be the single greatest change in our century," it said in a book outlining how the bank can help cities achieve economic growth and still have clean air and water and expansive greenery.

The programme was developed by an international team of experts from urban planning, transport, energy water and waste management and draws from the experiences of well-managed cities around the world.

It incorporates the best practices from model cities such as Singapore, Stockholm in Sweden, Yokohama in Japan and Curitiba in Brazil.

In cooperation with the bank, other cities in developing countries can implement these practices, principles and other practical methods and tools in accordance with their own local conditions.

The programme complements the bank's efforts to promote sustainable development and help cut greenhouse gas emissions blamed for climate change.

Entitled "Ecological Cities as Economic Cities", the book cites projections that developing countries will treble their entire built-up urban area from 200,000 square kilometres (77,220 square miles) to 600,000 square km (231,661 square miles) between 2000 and 2030.

"One could say we are building a 'whole new world' at about 10 times the speed in countries with severe resource constraints," says the book, launched in Singapore at the weekend.

The rise of urban centres cannot be avoided because on average about 75 percent of global economic production takes place in cities, the book says.

In many developing countries the share of urban centres in the total national economic output is over 60 percent, it notes.

But while urbanisation has helped lift millions of people out of poverty, it has also led to an "unprecedented consumption and loss of natural resources", the book says.

Lack of planning and an explosion in population growth has led to pollution, urban blight, poor water and sanitation conditions and the mushrooming of slum areas.

"Calculations already show that if developing countries urbanise and consume resources as developed countries have, an ecological resource base as large as four planet Earths would be needed to sustain growth," the book says.

It adds however that cities like Singapore, Stockholm, Yokohama and Curitiba have shown that economic growth, high-quality living standards and protection of the environment can go together.

The book notes that many of the solutions adopted by these cities "are affordable even when budgets are limited, and they generate returns including direct benefits to the poor".

Yumiko Noda, the deputy mayor of Yokohama, said at a seminar on "liveable cities" held in Singapore to coincide with the book's launching that citizens' involvement was crucial to a city's success.

Yokohama in 2001 planned to cut the city's waste by 30 percent within 10 years but achieved its goal in just five years.

This has saved the city money and also slashed its carbon dioxide emissions, she said.

Jim Adams, World Bank vice president for East Asia and the Pacific, said the pace of urbanisation has highlighted the urgency for an integrated economic and ecological approach to development.

"There is only a short space of time in which to make an impact on how this development takes place," he said in a statement.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Asia must act boldly to fight climate change: SKorea
18 June 2009
Agence France Presse

Asian countries are particularly vulnerable to the effects of global climate change and must take bold action to reverse it, South Korean Prime Minister Han Seung-Soo said Friday.

In a keynote speech at the World Economic Forum on East Asia, Han said many major cities on the continent are situated along coastlines.

"Two thirds of the world's poorest live in our region, and they are the most severely and disproportionately affected by climate change," he said.

"Thus it is imperative that we act boldly, decisively and without delay."

The urgency of the twin challenges posed by the global economic slump and climate change need a comprehensive policy response, Han said.

"We must not view these two global issues as mutually exclusive. Rather, we need to construct a new and fresh approach, recognising the symbiotic relationship between economic growth and environmental sustainability."

South Korea plans to spend some 40 billion dollars over the next four years on a "Green New Deal" policy aimed at creating one million jobs and shifting from "fossil-fuel dependent, quantity-oriented growth to a new paradigm of qualitative growth," he said.

Victor L.L. Chu, chairman of Hong Kong's First Eastern Investment Group, told the forum that China -- one of the world's most polluted countries -- is catching up fast in green growth projects.

The country plans a stimulus package worth 440 billion dollars to expand its renewable energy use, state media said last month.

Chu said China had also drastically raised fuel consumption tax over the last few months.

More significantly, there was a "fundamental shift" in attitudes towards green growth among frontline officials in provincial cities and townships.

"So they see much beyond just the protection of local jobs... they understand pure growth for growth's sake is damaging and sacrificing our children's and grandchildren's green future," Chu said.

Chiaki Ito, vice chairman of Japan's Fujitsu, said information and communication technology (ICT) could reduce the world's carbon dioxide emissions by 15 percent by 2020.

"As ICT is fully integrated into our everyday life, it could be a change agent to shift our thinking and behaviour. With sensors and actuators embedded in our daily lives, we can measure or visualize the energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions in real time," Ito said.
 

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The sabotage has the potential to greatly disrupt the removal of coal. Insiders say that once it has been stopped it is difficult to restart the heavily laden conveyors which is several kilometers long and comes in quarter kilometer sections.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The Big Apple by 2 wheels: With new bike lanes throughout city, tourists try new vantage point
7 October 2010

NEW YORK (AP) - In his essay "Taming the Bicycle," Mark Twain cautiously recommended bicycling: "You will not regret it, if you live."

That has always gone doubly for biking in New York.

But the city has undergone a two-wheeled makeover. In the last four years, the New York City Department of Transportation has added more than 200 miles of bikes lanes. The number of cyclists has increased 80 percent in the past decade. The city's goal is 1,800 miles of total bike lanes by 2030.

Earlier this year, National Geographic Traveler magazine did something that might once have been unthinkable: It put New York on a list of the most bike-friendly cities in the country, alongside Portland, Ore.

While biking has exploded for New Yorkers, tourists are quietly following. It is, after all, a great way to experience a new place: Faster than walking so you can cover a lot of ground, but far closer to your surroundings than a car.

In New York, it can be dizzying: rolling past Washington Square Park one moment, breezing along the Hudson the next. In a city where freedom of movement can often feel locked in gridlock, on a bike, one sails through the throngs.

Musician and New Yorker David Byrne wrote in his 2009 book "Bicycle Diaries" that riding through a city "is like navigating the collective neural pathways of some vast global mind."

The "neural pathways" of New York, though, are often strewn with potholes, aggressive drivers, unobservant pedestrians and -- often the worst of all -- pushy cyclists. New York has been significantly tamed when it comes to biking, but it's not exactly Amsterdam.

Nevertheless, tourists, having long endured double-decker buses and plodding ferries, are understandably looking for a new vantage point. A number of tours have sprung up and found visitors willing to strap on a helmet.

"A bus tour just did not hold the same appeal to me -- it's too passive," said Michelle Wright, 45, of Graham, N.C.

Recently, Wright and her two kids -- a 15-year-old daughter and a 12-year-old son -- did a tour of the Brooklyn Bridge and along the Hudson River through Bike and Roll NYC. The company has several locations for renting bikes, including Pier 84, near 12th Avenue and 43rd Street; Battery Park, and Central Park at Columbus Circle. The Pier 84 location provides easy access to the bike path along the city's relatively new but much-cherished Hudson River Greenway, which runs along the West Side of Manhattan from Battery Park at the southern tip to Dyckman Street on the northern tip.

Bike and Roll NYC tours ($40-50, two to three hours) depart daily; popular routes include Central Park and the Brooklyn Bridge. The company is listed among sightseeing choices on discounted visitor passes like the Explorer Pass.

"I felt very safe," said Wright. "More often than not, we were on a designated greenway. We felt the most in danger from the manic bikers on the Brooklyn Bridge."

The tour guide, too, made Wright feel like she was "sneaking in a little bit of historical sightseeing on my kids without them realizing it." A bike rental, a helmet and water were included, as is the case with most tours.

Gary Deliz, 26, visited New York earlier this year with his girlfriend. They chose a Central Park tour, thinking they could save a little time on their itinerary.

"If you didn't do the tour, you wouldn't know where to start," said Deliz of Central Park. "It's so big!"

There are other tour companies, too, such as the Central Park Bike Tour, with tours generally around $50-65. In addition to its Central Park route, the company also offers a Harlem tour, a nighttime tour and an architecture-focused tour. Some of the more arduous rides are only for those 18 and older.

More distinctive tours are given by Bike the Big Apple. Their expeditions generally cost around $90, but they're longer (approximately six hours). They include an "Ethnic Apple" tour through multiple boroughs, a Friday nightlife tour and tours before and after the New York marathon -- an "urban mosaic" tour and a "mellow-out/recovery" tour, respectively. They're also doing a special Halloween "Tour de Frights."

Just note that most bike tour and rental companies do less business in late fall and winter than in the warmer months, so call ahead to check on schedules.

Becky Greenberg, 65, came from St. Augustine, Fla., with her 79-year-old husband. They've spent many summers biking on Cape Cod, which got them accustomed to "lovely, twisting bike paths."

They did a Brooklyn Bridge tour and found it to be "such an adventure."

"Congestion is a friend to bikers," Greenberg said of the traffic they sped past.

Tours are a good option for visitors who are nervous about biking without a guide and those looking for maximum safety. But a bicycle, after all, is built for one, and many may prefer to explore on their own.

Both Central Park and the Hudson River Greenway offer straightforward routes that are hard to get lost on. You might want to plan on some stops, too, like a drink at the Boat Basin Cafe on West 79th Street along the Hudson, or to relax in Sheep Meadow in Central Park.

Or you might have your own destinations in mind. Maybe you want to meander around the cozy streets of Greenwich Village, or simply get lost. Cyclists may feel most at home in Brooklyn, where -- particularly in neighborhoods like Park Slope and Williamsburg -- biking is practically the preferred mode of travel. In summer and early fall, free ferries can take you to the bike paths of Governors Island, located in New York Harbor.

It's not difficult to rent bikes and make your own routes, even if you're an out-of-towner. The website Ride the City can steer you on the safest course (one of mostly bike lanes) and gives you all the nearest bike shops. Google Maps also offers directions by bike.

But setting off unguided, while offering more freedom, can also mean more trouble.

Stewart Hunt, 51, of Dallas, and his two teenage stepsons earlier this year rented bikes in the city.

"We went there and thought, `Oh, this will be a kick,'" said Hunt. "Then we realized there were things you had to be aware of."

They began to feel some trepidation after seeing a cyclist hit by a cab. They had difficulty finding the onramp to the Brooklyn Bridge, where they also had to wrestle with large crowds and fast native bikers.

Hunt said their trip was still a great experience and that he'd do it again, though next time he said: "I'd study the map a whole lot more."

Crime is a consideration as well. Never leave a bike unattended without a secure lock, not even for a moment. And if someone -- even a kid -- says, "Hey, can I see your bike for a minute?" -- don't be a fool. Grab your handlebars tight and ride away.

More ambitious cyclists may want to plan their visit around the annual Five Boro Bike Tour, a 42-mile ride through all five boroughs that drew more than 30,000 participants last year. The next ride is scheduled for May 1, 2011; registration begins in February.

There's even mountain biking in New York on trails in Highbridge Park in Upper Manhattan and Cunningham Park in Queens -- a good option for those who like thick tires and irony.

New York is actually home to the oldest bike path in the country: the Ocean Parkway bike path in Brooklyn, which begins near the southeast corner of Prospect Park and ends in Coney Island. Constructed in 1894 and designed by Frederick Olmsted and Calvert Vaux (the designers of Central Park and Prospect Park), it's a designated landmark.

New York, it turns out, has always been a bike town.

------

If You Go...

BIKE AND ROLL NYC: Rental locations include Pier 84, 12th Avenue and 43rd Street; Battery Park; Central Park at Columbus Circle. Daily tours; check website for fall hours; http://www.bikeandroll.com/newyork/. 212-260-0400.

CENTRAL PARK BIKE TOURS: 203 W. 58th St.; http://www.centralparkbiketour.com/. 212-541-8759.

BIKE THE BIG APPLE: http://www.bikethebigapple.com/. 877-865-0078.

OTHER NYC BIKE RESOURCES: http://www.bikenewyork.org

http://www.nycgovparks.org/facilities/bikeways

http://www.ridethecity.com
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Climate change targets developing world's cities

WASHINGTON, April 7 (Reuters) - Many fastest-growing cities, especially those in the developing world, stand to suffer disproportionately from the effects of climate change, a new study reported on Thursday.

Few urban areas are taking the necessary steps to protect their residents -- billions of people around the globe -- from such likely events as heat waves and rising seas, according to research to appear in Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability and European Planning Studies.

They are also failing to cut their own emissions of climate-warming greenhouse gases, the study found.

"Climate change is a deeply local issue and poses profound threats to the growing cities of the world," study author Patricia Romero Lankao, a sociologist specializing in climate change and urban development, said in a statement.

Because half of Earth's population is in cities, scientists like Romero Lankao are focusing on the potential climate change impacts in these areas.

The mere fact that they are cities, with densely packed construction, places their populations at greater risk from natural disasters, including those expected to be made worse by climate change.

Storm surges can inundate heavily populated coastal areas and heat waves can warm up paved cities more than surrounding areas, Romero Lankao found. And these events can be amplified in an urban environment.

500 CITIES WITH A MILLION OR MORE

In cities, prolonged hot weather can exacerbate existing levels of air pollution, causing health problems. Poorer urban neighborhoods that lack reliable sanitation, drinking water or roads are at increased risk, according to Romero Lankao, of the U.S. National Center for Atmospheric Research.

The number of city-dwellers worldwide has quadrupled since 1950, the study found, projecting that by 2020, more than 500 urban areas will have a million residents or more.

But urban leaders are largely failing to prepare for coming natural disasters that could affect their people, including building public transport that would cut greenhouse emissions, Romero Lankao said.

"Cities can have an enormous influence on emissions by focusing on mass transit systems and energy efficient structures," she said. "But local leaders face pressures to build more roads and relax regulations that could reduce energy use."

She noted that some cities' efforts to cut emissions are part of a larger push to ease traffic and other problems. She cited central London's Congestion Charging Zone, which aims to encourage more use of public transit, as one example. In Latin America, Curitiba, Brazil, and Bogota, Colombia, are integrating new development with mass transit systems.

Romero Lankao's study was conducted in association with the United Nations Human Settlements Program and funded by the U.S. National Science Foundation.
 

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Noxious
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not just big cities but all cities and towns need to act on this issue...
imagine the CO2 emission of all vehicles and factories in the suburbs and small towns combined.
 

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^^ "Climate change" has been hijacked by a fringe of scientists turned into part-time activists, and turned into a political stalemate. While I don't subscribe to any "deanilist" group, I also find many problems with the way certain radical activists have teamed up with scientists supposed to be neutral, sober and dispassionate about their objects of study.

From time to time, certain branches of science are taken over wackos and extremists more concerned with ideological questions than science itself. As so, I've lost respect for much of the "climate science" bunch, and I think governments had better fending them off for the time being, while everybody can be more calm, objective, less hysterical and more prone to find modern (e.g., more technology, more research, newer gadgets etc.) instead of this "you must consume less", "you must drive less", "you must live in a smaller house" etc.
 

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politics aside, i still believe we should somehow give mother nature its due respect!
Nature is not a "mother", it is just a set of living and non-living stuff that is there for us to take advantage, use and subdue according to our interest. Nature is not my "mother", it is our resource pool ready to be plunged and raided :)
 

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The Punk With the Camera
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Nature is not a "mother", it is just a set of living and non-living stuff that is there for us to take advantage, use and subdue according to our interest. Nature is not my "mother", it is our resource pool ready to be plunged and raided :)
You are disturbed. The world doesn't exist for you to conquer and pillage. Humanity has spent centuries trying to tame nature, but for everything we do, remember this: nature always wins.

You almost sound like a creationist by saying everything that exists exists for us to manipulate. It'd be good of you to accept that the natural world is a good thing to leave alone some times and that we're all lucky that Yellowstone doesn't erupt (which it could at any minute). You should know after last year when your whole continent was shut down by a volcanic eruption that for all our progress, for all our ambitions of "taming" nature, we are one small, insignificant part of this planet, and no amount of progress will ever truly stop nature. Earth's been here a whole lot longer than we have. We just need to make sure it isn't arrogant, paranoid, insecure pricks like yourself don't gain the power to mess with Mother Nature more than we already have.
 

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Noxious
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Nature is not a "mother", it is just a set of living and non-living stuff that is there for us to take advantage, use and subdue according to our interest. Nature is not my "mother", it is our resource pool ready to be plunged and raided :)
:eek:hno:
humans are facing extinction simply because everyone couldn't care less...
 

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You are disturbed. The world doesn't exist for you to conquer and pillage. Humanity has spent centuries trying to tame nature, but for everything we do, remember this: nature always wins.
Half of Great Plains would be flooded by now if not by extensive river rectification and flood control projects built there, for instance. Same goes for earthquake partially proof buildings that makes similar profile seismic shocks in similar areas kill 100 in US and 10.000 in Turkey, for instance.

You almost sound like a creationist by saying everything that exists exists for us to manipulate. It'd be good of you to accept that the natural world is a good thing to leave alone some times and that we're all lucky that Yellowstone doesn't erupt (which it could at any minute). You should know after last year when your whole continent was shut down by a volcanic eruption that for all our progress, for all our ambitions of "taming" nature, we are one small, insignificant part of this planet, and no amount of progress will ever truly stop nature. Earth's been here a whole lot longer than we have. We just need to make sure it isn't arrogant, paranoid, insecure pricks like yourself don't gain the power to mess with Mother Nature more than we already have.
I am perfectly aware of the risks that surrounds us all the time. All it takes is a meteor crash, a big one, and we'd be all gone in a flash.

What I am saying is that the fact we can be hit by some AXLK-349b 25km wide rock and get extinct doesn't mean we need to be overly sensitive about chopping down some forest to build something more useful over it, for instance. Or building dams along a river to generate electricity, no matte how "scenic" the place might have been.

Some people are affected by strange emotional connections with trees, landscapes, bodies of water... it is weird, almost sick that someone will be "sad" and cry because they build a mall over a conifer forest park. And then you get this "let's be friend of nature" b.s., nature is not my friend, there are thousands of bacteria, viruses, ferocious animals out there, nature is our unruly resource pool that we have every right to use as we want, without feeling any "ecoguilty".

Are we running out of oil? So let's take down rainforests all over the world to grow ethanol-viable plants. Simple as that. I don't care about the "beauty" of a bunch of gorillas, cheetahs and snakes anyway.
 

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Free Cake
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Half of Great Plains would be flooded by now if not by extensive river rectification and flood control projects built there, for instance. Same goes for earthquake partially proof buildings that makes similar profile seismic shocks in similar areas kill 100 in US and 10.000 in Turkey, for instance.



I am perfectly aware of the risks that surrounds us all the time. All it takes is a meteor crash, a big one, and we'd be all gone in a flash.

What I am saying is that the fact we can be hit by some AXLK-349b 25km wide rock and get extinct doesn't mean we need to be overly sensitive about chopping down some forest to build something more useful over it, for instance. Or building dams along a river to generate electricity, no matte how "scenic" the place might have been.

Some people are affected by strange emotional connections with trees, landscapes, bodies of water... it is weird, almost sick that someone will be "sad" and cry because they build a mall over a conifer forest park. And then you get this "let's be friend of nature" b.s., nature is not my friend, there are thousands of bacteria, viruses, ferocious animals out there, nature is our unruly resource pool that we have every right to use as we want, without feeling any "ecoguilty".

Are we running out of oil? So let's take down rainforests all over the world to grow ethanol-viable plants. Simple as that. I don't care about the "beauty" of a bunch of gorillas, cheetahs and snakes anyway.
Aaaaah, I see. You're actually cluelessly unaware of how these things actually work.

Since you seem so blinded by your misinformed viewpoint, I'll spell it out with nice easy words for you.

Human beings are part of nature. **** about with nature, and you **** about with the very think humanity relies on to live. You like to go on and on about glorious technological advances but people still need food and water and such rather simple things. Ripping out forests for example will strip away the fertile topsoil held in place by trees which would be required to grow your precious ethanol. Not to mention that with massive population increases any available land should be for food, not fuel. I'd rather eat on a horse and cart than go hungry (or cause others to go hungry) in a car. It's not as simple as nice views and pretty animals. Nature is the world. We live on the world. The moral of the story? Don't shit on the world! It's quite easy...
 

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The Punk With the Camera
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I think two things:

1. You're a delusional, sociopathic paranoid.

2. You've completely missed the point, and you will spend the rest of your life missing the point.

Strike that, add a third thing: I think the poster above me perfectly and eloquently summed how you're delusional.
 

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Oh No He Didn't
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Are we running out of oil? So let's take down rainforests all over the world to grow ethanol-viable plants. Simple as that. I don't care about the "beauty" of a bunch of gorillas, cheetahs and snakes anyway.
Are you aware that the rainforests provide 28% of the worlds ovygen and that some of the plants there may one day provide cures for incurrable diseases today? :nuts:
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Copenhagen named European Green Capital 2014 for bicycle culture, low-carbon targets

COPENHAGEN, June 30 (Xinhua) -- The European Commission has declared Copenhagen the European Green Capital 2014 for its efforts in fostering an urban bicycling culture and its plan for being carbon neutral by 2025.

The decision was announced at an award ceremony in the Spanish city of Vitoria-Gasteiz, the current title holder, on Friday evening.

The Commission praised the Danish capital's achievements in eco-innovation and sustainable mobility, and its commitment to act as a role model for the green economy in Europe and rest of the world.

"We have much to learn from the city's efforts to improve the environment and quality of life for citizens, whilst creating new business opportunities," said European Environment Commissioner Janez Potocnik.

"They will have numerous occasions to showcase their expertise and their creative approach to urban planning and to developing a green economy," he added at the ceremony.

Copenhagen, which has some 1.2 million inhabitants, has undergone a green transition in recent years. It has regenerated its former industrial areas, made its harbor waters clean enough to swim in, and invested in renewable-power infrastructure such as offshore wind-turbines and garbage-fired district heating plants.

It wants to be the world's first carbon neutral city by the year 2025, and has already achieved its mid-term goal of reducing carbon dioxide emissions to 20 percent of 2005 levels by 2015.

Moreover, one third of Copenhageners currently commute by cycle everyday, and the city wants to boost that number to 50 percent by 2015 in another bid to cut air pollution and improve citizens' health.

"(The award) is something Copenhageners can be really proud of every time they get on their bikes or take a swim in one of the harbor swimming pools," said Copenhagen Mayor Frank Jensen in a press statement.

Leading up to 2014 Copenhagen has emphasized public-private partnerships with companies and universities, among others, to boost eco-innovation and green growth.

It also signed a sister-city agreement with Beijing at the end of June and the two capitals will cooperate on achieving green growth and higher urban life quality.

Three out of four Europeans currently live in towns and cities, making greening of urban areas a top priority for the 27-member EU bloc.

The annual European Green Capital Award encourages cities to improve urban life quality through better urban planning and management and concern for the environment.

Eighteen European cities competed for the 2014 award, and were judged in 12 areas including climate change contributions, waste production and management, water consumption and treatment, and energy performance. The other finalists for the 2014 prize were Bristol in Britain and Frankfurt in Germany.
 
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