Things Are Good: Shipping Industry Finally Delivers on Climate Change

When climate conferences occur and parties sign on to legal agreements like the Paris Agreement some industries are excluded. Historically aviation and shipping have been left out from many climate change agreements which has resulted in both industries being behind the times, inefficient, and down right bad for the planet. Already, climate change is harming ...

Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading. – Ashley Renders reports on the Canadian mining companies which are using corporate trade deals to threaten developing countries with billion-dollar claims to stifle environmental protections. And Mike Blanchfield and Andy Blatchford report that China wants any trade deals to similarly privilege investors alone while making no allowances ...

Things Are Good: Streetmix: Remix Your Street

Streetmix Let’s be honest, people are bad at conveying their ideas on what streets can look like. Thankfully there’s an open source project designed to help people remix their local streets and share it with others. The web based design tool Streetmix provides a simple drag and drop interface to rethink your local roads, you ...

Things Are Good: This is Systemic Street Safety

The video above demonstrates how communities can transition from an unhealthy, vehicle focused, urban design to a healthy pedestrian design. Regular readers of this site know that streets designed for people are better for communities by making cities healthier and economically more productive. Cars are an clunky way to move people in cities so much ...

Things Are Good: Jaywalking Shouldn’t be Illegal

So far in 2018 a car driver has killed a person every week; if this continues Toronto will see yet another year in which more people die from vehicles than guns. Automobile advocates argue that it’s the victim’s fault for dying and demand stricter punishment for trivial things like jaywalking. Clearly, the debate in Canada ...

Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading. – Thomas Walkom and Andre Picard took the time to wonder whether the Libs actually planned to deliver on pharmacare before Bill Morneau confirmed otherwise. – Joe Fries examines the history of P3s in British Columbia. And Alex MacPherson breaks the news that the Saskatchewan Party is planning ...

Things Are Good: To Decrease Emissions Germany to Offer Free Public Transit

Germans have reputation of loving to drive so it might seem a little shocking to see the nation explore free public transit. The push for free travel comes from the need to reduce the country’s emissions – and soon. EU countries that don’t meet emissions targets in the next few years can be taken to ...

Things Are Good: It’s Time to Tax Car Drivers by the Kilometre

The RAND Corporation is calling for a new way to tax drivers in the states: by distance traveled. Car drivers may feel like they’re paying too much in taxes already, but the reality is that the costs of maintaining road infrastructure are far greater than revenue from vehicle-specific taxes. In the USA, congress has had ...

Accidental Deliberations: Monday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material to start your week. – Paul Krugman reminds us of the fraud that is right-wing bleating about deficits: There have been many “news analysis” pieces asking why Republicans have changed their views on deficit spending. But let’s be serious: Their views haven’t changed at all. They never really cared about debt and deficits; ...

Things Are Good: Cyclists Obey the Law More Than Drivers

Cyclists are law disobeying maniacs! At least that’s a common and all too nasty rumour in North American cities. It turns out that car drivers are the maniacs according to a study fresh out of Florida. The study, the largest of it’s kind, put sensors on cyclists which monitored their behaviour and that of cars ...

Things Are Good: Walkable Towns are Economically More Productive

Any visitor to a North American city knows that a lot of the geography is designed for single occupant car-based transportation. Anybody who’s spent months in any of these places knows that this car-focused design has been an unmitigated disaster. People are dying, the planet is being killed, and so many other problems stem from ...

Things Are Good: Blossoming Bikelanes in Berlin

Berlin continues to impress environmentalists around the globe with the city’s efforts to adjust to the reality of the 21st century. Last year Berlin got attention for being a “sponge city” and this year will see the start of a bike lane network that rivals other cities. With car traffic snarling nearly every city on ...

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading. – Joseph Stiglitz discusses how the Republicans’ tax scam is designed for the sole purpose of further enriching their already-wealthy donors, while Theodoric Meyer notes that it also stands to make loads of money for lobbyists. – Jagmeet Singh makes the case for Canada to work on a tax ...

Things Are Good: Breathe Easy Thanks to Public Transit

Traffic congested cities suffer not just people stressed out in cars but the exhaust their cars toss into the air. As a result of the use of automobiles asthma and other respiratory issues increase in urban areas, leading to increased health costs and harder lives. This means that if we want people living in cities ...

Things Are Good: Intersection Design Improved by Using Leaves

Got together with some neighbours and transformed a local intersection with chalk & leaves, revealing a surplus surface area of 2,000 square feet which could be re-designed as a parkette, new sidewalks, and much shorter/safer crossings. More: https://t.co/SNYkMMo0Ui pic.twitter.com/psv0MRTZXi — dave meslin (@meslin) November 29, 2017 Dave Meslin got back to his roots by engaging ...

Things Are Good: Kansas is Growing Roadside Grass

Highways are loved in America due to their ability to allow single occupant vehicles to move uninterrupted, thus they crisscross the entirety of the United States. This makes for a lot of land covered by asphalt, cars spattering litter, brake dust, exhaust onto the roadside, and large swaths of manicured grass. The highway side grass ...

Accidental Deliberations: Uberrific!

Cover-ups!Scandals! Sexual harassment!Tax evasion! Employment standards violations! Deliberate dishonesty!And all in the service of a business model built on becoming too big to ban while operating as a regulatory-evasion company! Yep, that sounds like the Saskatchewan Party’s kind of business. Which means the only question left is: how much public money will get handed out ...

Things Are Good: Birds Provide Japanese Train Design

Yesterday a Japanese train company apologized for running 20 seconds ahead of schedule. How did Japanese trains get so fast? The answer for how their famous bullet trains move so quickly is thanks in part to biomimicry, the study of using animals as a source for design. The front of the bullet train was inspired ...

Things Are Good: NASA Designs Plane Modifications to Save Fuel

A seemingly simple change to airplane design can make a huge difference in fuel efficiency: add another engine. Yes, as counterintuitive as it sounds, NASA has figured out that by adding an engine to the rear of the plane the airflow of the plane itself can provide more thrust. Airplanes are notoriously bad for the ...

Things Are Good: Go Ride the Bus, Busses are Great!

When is a bus not a bus? When it’s a trackless train. Busses are a great solution to traffic congestion, so much so that bus rapid transit (BRT) systems are growing the world over. The problem with getting more money into BRTs and expanding them is the baggage of the word bus. It turns out ...

Things Are Good: Let’s Outright Ban Cars in Large Cities

Vehicles have been used to kill a lot of people throughout 2017, sometimes it’s an act of terror and other times it’s drivers being startlingly incompetent. Either way, people who walk are under threat from vehicular traffic in our cities (remember that everyone is a pedestrian). This past weekend in Toronto 11 people were struck ...

Things Are Good: European Cities Announce Bans on Fossil Fuel Vehicles

It’s no shock that cars are bad for health, what is shocking is that we continue to build cities to support automobiles. This is changing in some European cities and hopefully the idea will spread. Quite a few large cities in Europe are outright banning cars that use consume fossil fuels in the coming years ...

Things Are Good: Good Health Stems from Walking, Biking, and Transit

Regularly walking and biking are good for one’s health, but did you know taking public transit is too? That’s right just by not taking a car to work like most North Americans you can be healthier. A simple life change can have a large impact on your life, plus by not using a car you ...

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading. – Linda McQuaig writes that it’s long past time to review our tax system to make sure it isn’t unfairly leaking money to the people who need it least: These high rollers are able to avoid substantial amounts of tax by setting up private corporations and then funneling their ...

Things Are Good: How the Shape of Cities Impact Public Transportation

Cities contain the majority of the worlds population and moving that many people is a challenge, to say the least. Each city has its own design and plan for public transportation and some are clearly better than others. Wendover Productions tackles this question and provides some nice insights into what makes a city a good ...