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US spends billions on roads rather than public transport in ‘climate time bomb’

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From https://www.theguardian.com/business/2024/feb/29/biden-spending-highways-public-transport-climate-crisis

Quote:

The US’s fixation with hulking roads – along with the growth of supersized cars that are responsible for about 40,000 deaths a year in accidents, a toll that has ticked up in recent years – has led to calls for a rethink. This month, around 200 climate, biking and walkability groups called for a national moratorium on highway expansions due to the ills they bring.

“The highway system we have built in our country is unsustainable, both financially and environmentally, and disproportionately harms low-income and Black and brown communities,” an open letter from the coalition says.

There is little sign of improved fortunes for public transport, however. Rail and bus services were badly hit during the Covid pandemic, with a lack of commuter revenue causing headaches for several city systems seeking to cover their basic operational costs.

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5 comments

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chrisonabike | 1 month ago
3 likes

Notjustbikes paints a depressing picture of where they are.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y_SXXTBypIg

OTOH folks in the US seem to be pretty confident they know what they need. And for most of them motor vehicles are unquestioned. So I'd say good luck them - if only it weren't that they are pretty... forceful ... about getting the vast resources they are using.

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hawkinspeter replied to chrisonabike | 1 month ago
4 likes

chrisonabike wrote:

Notjustbikes paints a depressing picture of where they are. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y_SXXTBypIg OTOH folks in the US seem to be pretty confident they know what they need. And for most of them motor vehicles are unquestioned. So I'd say good luck them - if only it weren't that they are pretty... forceful ... about getting the vast resources they are using.

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Dnnnnnn | 1 month ago
2 likes

I can't see the US giving up their reliance on cars. It's too ingrained in the psyche and in its physical development. Other than in a few places and for a few purposes, EVs are probably the best we can hope for in the foreseeable future.

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andystow replied to Dnnnnnn | 1 month ago
2 likes

Dnnnnnn wrote:

I can't see the US giving up their reliance on cars. It's too ingrained in the psyche and in its physical development. Other than in a few places and for a few purposes, EVs are probably the best we can hope for in the foreseeable future.

Unfortunately, true. It would take a while to either thicken up or abandon the suburban sprawl, but at the moment the average person travels nearly 40 miles a day, which is more than double what I cycle. I wouldn't even want to do that much while still working. Transit is a non-starter. Even if the money were there, the development pattern makes it nearly impossible to provide it at a useable frequency.

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hawkinspeter replied to andystow | 1 month ago
6 likes

andystow wrote:

Unfortunately, true. It would take a while to either thicken up or abandon the suburban sprawl, but at the moment the average person travels nearly 40 miles a day, which is more than double what I cycle. I wouldn't even want to do that much while still working. Transit is a non-starter. Even if the money were there, the development pattern makes it nearly impossible to provide it at a useable frequency.

The best time to start building active travel infrastructure is twenty years ago. The second best time is now.

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