Iceland will fulfil its commitments and more
48 measures, 15 of them are new
Prime Minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir, Minister for the Environment and Natural Resources Guðmundur Ingi Guðbrandsson, Minister of Finance Bjarni Benediktsson and Minister of Transport and Local Government Sigurður Ingi Jóhannsson presented the second version of the Climate Action Plan today.
– – – – – – > Working draft of 1 May 2020
WORLD STREETS is betting its future on the coming immediate-term transition led by certain ambitious, responsible cities, nations, organizations and citizens in different parts of the world to come together to break the downward pattern of ever-increasing climate stress — and before the challenge to plan and execute highly aggressive near-term initiatives aimed at sharply cutting greenhouse gas emissions from the mobility sector. And doing all this while working with proven tools, policies and strategies that harness cost-effective, readily available, measures, technologies, operational and management competence. Our job is to support them as best we can.
CONTEXT/KEYWORDS:: Climate/Emergency Cities/Mobility Vision/Strategy Streets/Cars Time/Space Private/Shared Equity/Women Action/Manage
- You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete. – Buckminster Fuller
THE 2020 FIVE PERCENT CLIMATE/MOBILITY CHALLENGE
– By Jeff McMahon
- “I want you, on purpose, to spend $33,000 on an asset, okay?
- And I want you, on purpose, the minute you buy it, to lose 11.5 percent.
- And on purpose to make that asset sit idle 95 percent of the time,”
The coronavirus has exposed the ills of continued automobile-centric urban planning practices that adversely impact equity, health and the climate. Those of us who are working from home, own an automobile and can conveniently make grocery runs may overlook the fact that many in this country are not so lucky. Many households rely on public transit systems that are struggling to provide service, or they may bear high transportation costs exacerbated by a lack of access to the most critical of needs.
No technological solution will solve the systemic problems with our urban land use and transportation policies. We simply need to commit to the development of complete neighborhoods and communities that ensure access to food, healthcare, education and jobs — without relying on personal vehicles.
In the midst of this crisis, many are pointing to the outbreak of COVID-19 in urban centers such as New York City to support anti-density arguments. This sentiment is nothing new in the environmental community, much of which grew out of anti-development advocacy of the 1970s and ’80s. But the world is a different place, and it’s time for the environmental community to push back on these arguments.
After all, compact and mixed-use neighborhoods — which can include medium or “gentle” density levels — are, by nature, resilient and energy efficient. Barring supply chain collapse, they far outperform suburban communities in their access to food and other critical needs during crises such as the one we are experiencing.
Why then, do we continue to outlaw this resiliency in most of our cities?
Paris. 22 March 2020
So now what? Well, for sure life is about to get very interesting. With the unmet challenge of the world climate emergency, and now out of the blue the Coronavirus fast upon us, we are now in the process of putting the old century once and for all firmly behind us. Not so much because we want to, but because we HAVE to. It’s a new world out there and we must meet it!
2020 will be the year of transition. And at the end of this round we will never be the same. One way or another! Your call!
So for our bit, please stay tuned to World Streets and Co. Here and at . . .
The COVID-19 pandemic is an opportunity to embrace the future of work-from-home and the greater adoption of walking and cycling.
By Lloyd Wright, Senior Urban Development Transport Specialists, Asian Development Bank – https://blogs.adb.org/author/lloyd-wright https://blogs.adb.org/let-s-use-the-pandemic-to-expand-our-transport-options
The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted lives and livelihoods, and has become a devastating global human tragedy. A change event of this magnitude also affects fundamentally how we work and interact. Personal mobility in the age of COVID-19 may never be quite the same again. The new normal of mobility, though, may represent a unique opportunity.
Work-from-home has always represented an option to both reduce emissions and promote family time. However, work-from-home’s potential has never been fully realized in terms of actual practice, as long-standing practices and cultures in Asia and the Pacific often prioritize physical time in the office.
New information technologies have meant that work-from-home does not have to substantially reduce the quality of workplace interactions. A plethora of software apps, such as Google Hangout, Skype, Cisco Webex, MS Teams, and Zoom, are now available to give a visual space for sharing information and facilitating decision-making. We are moving away from mere tele-conferencing to lifelike virtual interaction. While work-from-home may never fully replace workplace presence, the new technologies at least offer the potential to reduce the need for everyday commuting.
Lockdowns across many cities and countries has meant that a unique global experiment is underway. The World Health Organization estimates that 7 million persons suffer premature deaths each year from air pollution, and that 1.3 million persons perish in car crashes. For cities with air quality problems, such as Beijing, Delhi, and Manila, the lockdowns have visibly brought pristine skies, as also evidenced by satellite imagery. In addition, the University of California at Davis has been tracking reductions in car crashes in California during the state’s partial lockdown conditions. Serious injuries and fatalities in the past week have been halved from 400 to just 200 per day.
None of this is to minimize the appalling human tragedy of COVID-19’s trail of death and illness. The social and economic cost of the pandemic is staggering. But these types of comparisons do indicate what could be achieved if we adopted sustainable energy and transport practices once the pandemic has passed.
Of course, the virus also hits certain forms of sustainable personal mobility quite hard. Buses and trains place passengers in close proximity, heightening disease transmission risk. During this time of crisis, to the extent persons have options, passengers do appear to be avoiding public transport, and many cities have closed public transport in its entirety. Most likely, governments will need to step forward with financial support to public transport operators for both short-term and long-term viability.
Conversely, this situation does represent a large potential opportunity for walking and cycling. Already, in the early days of the virus, New York City is recording record levels of cyclists. The city’s Department of Transport reports a 50 percent increase in cycling over the same period last year, and a 67 percent increase in usage of New York’s CitiBike bicycle sharing system.
Home delivery services also appear to be experiencing a significant increase in the wake of virus lockdowns. Such services hold the potential to reduce overall transport congestion and emissions by effectively achieving economies of scales in urban delivery logistics.
With streets now operating under dramatically reduced traffic levels, an opportunity exists to quickly address long-standing needs that are difficult to implement under day-to-day realities. Upgrading footpaths and developing cycleways is the type of quick win that can utilize the economic stimulus spending being deployed to shore up falling economies. These investments can be done quickly and create jobs at a time when it is most needed.
The pandemic is a change event like few others. The dramatic break in personal mobility from past habits represents an opportunity to view cities in a new way. From this moment, we could embrace the future of work-from-home and the greater adoption of walking and cycling. Perhaps there is yet a small silver lining from this unfolding tragedy.
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Climate crisis: UK Government unveils ‘unprecedented’ vision of future travel with focus on walking, cycling and public transport, targeting ‘net zero’ greenhouse gas emissions by 2050
UK MINISTERIAL FOREWORD
Micro-mobility is a category of modes of transport that are provided by very light vehicles such as electric scooters, electric skateboards, shared bicycles and electric pedal assisted, pedelec, bicycles. The primary condition for inclusion in the category is a gross vehicle weight of less than 500 kg. Additional conditions are the provision of a motor, primary utility use, and availability as a shared service. (Thanks WP.) Note: Additional graphics below purloined from the net. Creative Commons –
Micro-mobility’s 15,000-mile checkup
January 2019 | Article By Kersten Heineke, Benedikt Kloss, Darius Scurtu, and Florian Weig Source and full text, graphics and links: https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/automotive-and-assembly/our-insights/micromobilitys-15000-mile-checkup
What is Lunchtime Streets?
Source: Active City Network – https://www.activecitynetwork.com/lunchtime-streets
We use this type of temporary project to measure the effects and perceptions of the local community when reducing traffic at a peak times, when most people are travelling on foot or bicycle will be key to making the streets safer. The results of the study may lead to future enhancements of the public realm.
It is also a great way to enjoy your lunchtimes. We welcome the involvement of local working, studying and residential community.
- Mobility is not gender neutral, and may have a male bias.
- Women have different needs and behaviours when it comes to transportation.
- Understanding their perspective could improve mobility for everyone.
As multiple studies have shown, women have different patterns, needs and behaviours. Female mobility is characterized by trip-chaining and time poverty. The main reasons for this are that women do 75% of the world’s unpaid care work, the gender pay gap, and women’s physical condition. Women have a smaller range when traveling the same amount of time. Women carry luggage and accompany people, more often on public transport and by foot. The car is less often the default solution.
Say Good-bye to Old Mobility
Plan Zero – also known as “old mobility” or “no plan in sight” – with its stress on more supply, more vehicles and more infrastructure as the knee-jerk answer to all our mobility problems — has been the favored path for conceptualizing, decision-making and investment in the sector over the last 70 years. It is well-known and easy to see where it is leading. Aggressing the planet, costing us a bundle, draining the world’s petroleum reserves, and delivering poor service for the majority . . . Plan Zero is a clear failure. It’s time for directive, coherent, effective action without waiting around for reprieve or good news from some evasive short term fix of distant technology promise. It is time to move to a New Mobility Agenda and fifteen pragmatic, affordable, near-term steps to sustainable transport, sustainable cities and sustainable lives. Continue reading
EARNING A PUBLIC SPACE DIVIDEND IN THE STREETS
Abstract: Experiments with shared space or “naked streets” have captured imaginations and considerable media coverage in recent years. Most of the excitement stems from surprise that streets without kerbs, road markings or signage can work well and achieve “safety through uncertainty”. This paper looks at another equally important insight from shared space.
It focuses on a series of innovations that, like shared space, re-arrange the roles of streets in new ways to yield a “dividend” of expanded urban public realm, with little or no loss of transport utility. Such a space dividend should be especially welcome in dense cities that are both congested and short of public space.
What are streets and roadways for? An obvious answer is traffic movement. But that is clearly not the whole story. A second role is to allow the reaching of final destinations— the role we call “access”. Thirdly, streets can be valuable public places in their own right. In addition, moving high-speed motor vehicles differ enormously from movement by low-speed, vulnerable modes such as bicycles. Unfortunately, speedy motor traffic movement and the other roles of streets are in serious conflict. For almost a century, the tension between these roles has been at the heart of debate over street design (Hass-Klau 1990; Jacobs et al. 2002). This article reviews emerging resolutions to this tension.
The Battle for Street Space
Cities are a critical player in effective climate action, and many are already making headway where others are falling behind.
Will cities ultimately be viewed as the cause or solution to the global climate emergency? That seems to be the crossroads at which we now find ourselves, and it is a question which is either troubling or inspiring for city planners and mayors alike.
Cities are huge contributors to climate change, responsible for about 70 per cent of all greenhouse gas emissions and yet they are also at the frontline of the impacts of floods, extreme heat and drought.
Research by scientists at the Crowther Lab predicted that 77 per cent of cities around the world will experience dramatic change in climate conditions over the next 30 years.
For us, the most effective response begins by helping cities embrace the essential role they play. Cities are a critical player in effective climate action,
- Continue reading – – > https://www.climate-kic.org/opinion/cities-must-act-as-beacons-for-ambitious-climate-action/
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About the World Streets Climate program coordinator:
13, rue Pasteur. Courbevoie 92400 France
Bio: Founding editor of World Streets (1988), Eric Britton is an American political scientist, teacher, occasional consultant, and sustainability activist who has observed, learned, taught and worked on missions and advisory assignments on all continents. In the autumn of 2019, he committed his remaining life work to the challenges of aggressively countering climate change and specifically greenhouse gas emissions emanating from the mobility sector. He is not worried about running out of work. Further background and updates: @ericbritton | http://bit.ly/2Ti8LsX | #fekbritton | https://twitter.com/ericbritton | and | https://www.linkedin.com/in/ericbritton/ Contact: email@example.com) | +336 508 80787 (Also WhatApp) | Skype: newmobility.)
Ladies, males and independent thinkers: Do you notice anything in particular in the following sequence of images of a hugely important challenge for our planet, or at least the species? Let’s say, some kind of pattern as you move from scene to scene? Or, better yet, some kind of weird, insistent, let’s go so far as to say sick pattern?
The following set of a handful of images offers a pretty fair overview of the so-called ‘manning table’ for this particular mission, i.e., saving the planet.
We often hear that sustainable transportation reform is going to require massive public investments, large construction projects, elaborate technology deployments, and above all and by their very nature are going to take a long time before yielding significant results. This is quite simply not true. This approach, common in the last century and often associated with the “American transportation model”, no longer has its place in a competitive, efficient, democratic city And we can start tomorrow, if we chose to.
To get a feel for this transformative learning reality let’s start with a quick look at a first lot of ideas for Slow Street Architecture as a major means for reducing traffic related nuisances, accident prevention and improving quality of life for all. These approaches are not just “nice ideas”. They have proven their merit and effectiveness in hundreds of cities around the world. There is no good reason that they cannot do the same in your city. Starting tomorrow morning.
(For further background on external sources feeding this listing, see Sources and Clues section below.)
– – – – – – – – > by Eric the Crow, Reportng for World Streets, from Reykjavik Iceland
Want to check it out?
Article by Ms. Lea Müller, appearing in the Reykjavik Grapevine of Sept 19, 2019. The article is presented here below, and followed by historical background information and context on the Car Free Days phenomenon in which the city of Reykjavik and Iceland turned out to play a key historic role.
September 19, 2019, Reykjavik
To celebrate the annual Car-Free Day in Iceland, some of the main roads will be closed in the Reykjavík city centre this Sunday, September 22nd. The Reykjavík Mobility Parade will start at 13:00 and move through Miklubraut and Hringbraut to Lækjartorg, where festivities will take place.
Starting in 1996, the Car-Free movement has a long history in Iceland. The idea originated from the Accessible Cities Conference held in Spain two years prior to Iceland’s first festivity and the event has significantly grown in size since. Its main objectives are to promote public transport, bikes and walking and give people a chance to reflect on motorisation and how traffic can be improved in cities.