All posts by Paul Rolfe

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Ups and Downs After Midterms for Environmentalists

note: Sustain Mizzou is a non-partisan 501 (c) 3 non-profit. We do not endorse any political party, candidates, or policy. Opinions of Footprint writers do not necessarily reflect those of Sustain Mizzou.


By Paul Rolfe

Environmental advocates may be feeling a paler shade of green after the mid-term elections.  There were some big wins — and some big losses. Tree huggers are celebrating the failure of Prop 23 in California — keeping the state’s climate change law and renewable energy requirements intact — but CNBC reports that things aren’t so bright on the federal level.

“One other thing with the GOP takeover in the House, it is unlikely there will be any sort of greenhouse gas / carbon cap and trade coming at a federal level. If we look in California, this is why so many green advocates and analysts have been looking at Prop 23.”

Business Green says climate change will slip further down the agenda, with the budget deficit and healthcare reforms expected to become the main focus for Republican in Congress. Grist’s Christopher Mims put it most comically when he said:

“If you’re a person in favor of action on climate and clean energy — in other words, a climate hawk — you’d be forgiven for thinking that now is a good time to pop a Glock in your mouth and make a brain slushy.” Continue reading Ups and Downs After Midterms for Environmentalists

It’s RIDICULOUS not to bike

A campaign in Malmö Sweden, combined with smarter biking infrastructure, has increased the share of transportation held by biking from 20% to 30% since 1995.

In 2003, the city’s bike and transportation department did a study and found that 50% of all trips under 5km were by car. That study inspired the campaign called “No Ridiculous Car Trips”. They also found that often times it was quicker to bike distances under 5km than to drive.

They did some creative marketing: putting live people on billboards, giving away bikes, and putting orange bike covers on people’s seats. They’re easily recognized with their silver and orange colors riding around, promoting biking in the city. The part that they seem most proud of is a contest where people wrote about a time when they shamefully drove somewhere when they could have biked or walked. Organizers in the video call it a sort of “confession” and the winner received a free bike.

With the Bike Resource Center getting started at MU soon, they may want to take some pages out of Malmö’s playbook.

Check out the video below by Martin Lang to learn more. (I hope you like reading, because it’s all subtitled.)