Old news/January 2011

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Monday | January 31, 2011

Green and off-green germ warriors.

Feds Want To Roll More Green
A number of Federal agencies are already familiar with the color green. Whether it's an alert code stuck at the very bottom of Dept. Homeland Security's Terror Alert System[1], or the hue of endless piles of loot shoveled into the black hole of a failed financial system, green is the new black as far as the Feds are concerned. Now they want to raise the green bar high on their own supply. Supply chain, that is. And you can participate! The White House Council on Environmental Quality and the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) are co-sponsoring a "Greening the Supply Chain Roundtable" tomorrow in Portland at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI) Auditorium (1945 SE Water Avenue, Portland, OR 97214). The event is scheduled for Tuesday, February 1, 2011; 3:15 PM - 4:45 PM. Wanna join the fun? Visit Greening the Supply Chain Roundtable to sign up.

Go to story: Obama administration looks to greening federal supply chain
Go to sign-up form: Greening the Supply Chain Roundtable

Sunday | January 30, 2011

Oregon State Bank

Public Forum: Oregon State Bank Bill | Tuesday February 1st, 2011
Did you know that an "Oregon State Bank could offer 6 percent credit cards and 6 percent certificates of deposit, much better than any private bank offers"? In fact, low-interest credit loans and high-interest savings are not the only potential benefits a state bank can offer the citizens of the state it serves. A state bank is potentially free to align its mission with the interests of that state's many and diverse communities, rather than the short-term interests of a small group of profit-seeking shareholders. You can learn about the other benefits a state bank can offer Oregonians at an upcoming public forum focused on the Oregon State Bank Bill.

Go to email announcement: Oregon State Bank Bill - Public Forum - Tuesday February 1st, 2011
Go to story: Why a state bank makes sense
Go to blog: Public Banking Institute's Public Banking Blog
Go to story: Are State-Run Banks a Good Option?

Saturday | January 29, 2011

Egyptian Uprising Sparks Sympathy Protests In Portland, Elsewhere
"The uprising and unrest in Egypt is spawning sympathy protests across the United States." Yup! Even "in cities [like] Washington, D.C., San Francisco and Portland..." About "300 protesters turned out in Portland's Pioneer Courthouse Square Saturday, most of them Egyptian-American. They support the protesters in Egypt, and they want Mubarak out." Egyptian-American and Portland resident Doaa Elhaggen "is fed up with 30 years of autocratic rule in her native country. 'Everything is messed up: education, health, transportation....'" Hey wait a second! All that is also "messed up" right her in the good ol' U.S. of A. Time for our own uprising? Perhaps. But some folks here worry that if the Arab world's people free themselves they could disrupt oil flows to fuel-hungry U.S. drivers. Three Bronx cheers for good ol' Yankee pragmatism!

Go to story: Portland-area Egyptian-Americans stage protest sympathy rally
Go to story: Unrest in Egypt stirs interest in auto show’s electric cars: Crowds swarm to clean energy cars as Mideast protests spur oil supply concerns
Go to story: Inside Story - Egypt: The youth perspective: Young people are at the forefront of protests in Egypt, but do they believe that they can bring about change?
Go to analysis: We're Better Off Than Egypt -- Right?

Friday | January 28, 2011

zipcars are fun

More 'Eco Friendly' Cars on the Way!
In the past few years, Portland has made a bigger name for itself in the US than what it once had. It has bred many talented fashion designers and people who are generally more eco friendly than our neighbors in California and Nevada. And now, it is possible to mirror that eco friendly attitude you have on your zipcar vehicle! Plug-in Prius Hybrids are not officially coming onto the scene until 2012, but residents Portland, Boston, and California are all lucky enough to experience the full experience today! There are two of these zipcars located in Portland, one in the Portland State University parking garage and the other at Shaver Green. In fact, maybe the grass really is greener on the other side (of the wheel).

Go to story: Zipcar Gets 8 Plug-In Prius Hybrids From Toyota for Real-World Testing

Thursday | January 27, 2011

Environmental Organizations Seek Protection for Klamath River Chinook Salmon
A petition signed by four local and national environmental organizations has been submitted to the National Marine Fisheries Service asking for endangered species protection for Klamath River chinook salmon in northern California and southern Oregon. According to the petition, Klamath River chinook salmon, prized by fishers for its taste and economic importance, has declined from 100,000 before dam construction and other habitat changes to now only 7,000 individuals. Environmental organizations hope that being listed as an endangered species under the ESA would allow fish populations to stabilize and recover.

Go to story: Groups seek protection for Klamath Chinook salmon
Go to story: Conservation groups seek Endangered Species Act listing for Klamath River chinook salmon
Go to press release: Endangered Species Act Protection Sought for Klamath River Chinook Salmon

Wednesday | January 26, 2011

Corporate lobby bombs.

The Internet: Just Another Cable TV Box?
This coming Friday, January 28th, you are invited to participate in Portland City Council's Portland Broadband Strategic Plan Kick-Off event - CONNECTING OUR FUTURE - from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon in Portland City Council Chambers. Who else is showing up? Public servants from the city and county, a variety of public advocacy representatives, and the usual corporate lobbyists from AT&T Wireless, Comcast and other "industry players." Nationally, it's the industry players, and their handmaidens in Congress and the Supreme Court, who've wreaked the most havoc with public access to free, open, unfettered and affordable access to the Internet. Ten to fifteen years ago, thousands of mostly mom & pop internet service providers (ISPs) provided dial-up internet access to anyone who wanted it. If you didn't like the available ISP choices in your community, you could set up your own with just a small investment and a bit of technical know-how. These days, most of us access the Internet through our cable or DSL connections, or through our mobile devices. Access is controlled by a tiny number of corporate giants who invest millions of dollars each year to buy off your congress person, your senator, as well as any judge or regulator they can get to. The reason? The business rationale for forcefully stuffing the most democratizing communications medium ever imagined into a tightly controlled, commercially restricted "cable box"? Think about it: what could possibly threaten large corporations--essentially private label totalitarian regimes--more than genuine democracy?

Go to announcement: Portland Stategic BroadBand Plan: Connecting Our Future
Go to Personal Telco: Personal Telco
Go to story: U.S. Court Curbs F.C.C. Authority on Web Traffic
Go to history: FAQ: What is Brand X really about?

Tuesday | January 25, 2011

Tobacco sales decline in Oregon
What is going on? Isn't smoking still cool in Oregon? Have those wacko doctors and scientists finally convinced people that it's unhealthy or something? Do some people actually dislike the taste it gives everything they eat? Well then why not respect the tobacco industry's marketing shift towards flavored smokeless tobacco. The additives mostly mask the tobacco flavor with something marginally more pleasant, and there's no law against constantly spitting brown sludge. My friend Phillip Morris says it's really sexy. It's still unhealthy though.

Go to story: Report Finds Tobacco Sales Down In Oregon

Monday | January 24, 2011

Eastbank Esplanade: Unlike East Burnside, it's a lovely and bike friendly bike ride.

Life In The Bike Lane: East Burnside
From BikePortland.org: "It's great to have a wide bike lane on Burnside. It would be even greater to someday have real, world-class bike access on this street with physical separation from motor vehicle traffic. I'd love to enjoy the same level of safe access to this street that other vehicles enjoy. If I did, I'd be able to bike comfortably with my kids to the many interesting businesses in the area." So, uh, when do we install bike lanes on West Burnside?

Go to story: Photo essay: Riding the new Burnside bikeway

Sunday | January 23, 2011

Starvation arts.

Genuine Prosperity Begins In Community
We live in a world where most of us remain everlastingly duped by a perennial handful of folks who feel an absolute need to maintain power, domination and control. The relentless torrent of obscenities that result are too numerous to recount here. Even so, it's worth noting that in 2009--immediately after Wall Street's rampant criminality triggered the Great Recession--its "top 25 hedge-fund managers made a staggering $1-billion each...."[2] Meanwhile, on average, "1 person dies every second as a result, either directly or indirectly, of hunger - 4000 every hour - 100,000 each day - 36 million each year - 58% of all deaths (2001-2004 estimates).[3] At what point to communities of people begin rejecting absurd economic dogmas in favor of real-world initiatives that drive genuine, reasonably equitable prosperity into their communities? What will it take for folks at the grassroots level, working within their communities, to build economic and other social structures that deliver reasonable, healthy livelihoods to everyone in the community?

Go to story: "Growing Wealthier" report shows how smart growth can enhance prosperity
Go to report: Growing Wealthier: Smart Growth, Climate Change and Prosperity
Go to essay: Unequal wealth distribution: Cause and effect
Go to story: Job and Wealth Creation at the Grassroots Level – A Working Model In Cleveland
Go to "Who Rules America?": Wealth, Income, and Power
Go to "The Spirit Level": The Spirit Level: Why More Equal Societies Almost Always Do Better

Saturday | January 22, 2011

Bike economy on the move.

Building Bike Lanes Creates Twice As Many Jobs Per Dollar Spent As Does Fixing Roads

Pedestrian projects 6.0 2.2 3.1 11.3 1.9
Bike lanes (on-street) 7.9 2.5 4.0 14.4 1.8
Bike boulevard (planned) 6.1 2.4 3.2 11.7 1.9
Road repairs and upgrades 3.8 1.5 2.0 7.4 1.9
Road resurfacing 3.4 1.5 1.9 6.8 2.0
  1. Iraq Adopts Terror Alert System
  2. Redirecting our rage at the real gravy train
  3. Starvation: Hunger mortality statistics

Go to story: Building Bike Lanes Creates Twice As Many Jobs As Fixing Roads
Go to report: Estimating The Employment Impacts Of Pedestrian, Bicycle, And Road Infrastructure

Friday | January 21, 2011

Portlandia: As seen on TV.

It's All Downhill From Here
A few decades ago, Portland was just a dingy Northwest backwater largely ignored by the rest of the country. Back then it seemed that most of the folks one met on the street were born and raised here. Many couldn't wait to get out: to San Francisco, or to Seattle, or to New York City, or to London, or to anywhere that looked, felt and sounded more exciting than Portland. Housing was dirt cheap. Everyday folks suffered low self-esteem and utterly lacked all pretense. To Portlandians, the Rose City wasn't merely white, it was white trash. City government was irredeemably corrupt[1] and P-Town's thuggish cops made even Bad Lieutenant[2] look good. Everything was perfect. Then the hipsters came. Everything changed. The newly minted, self-consciously "cool" Portlandians flooding into Stumptown took their "high-minded, laid-back, arts-focused, sustainability-oriented" vegan and passive-aggressive selves a bit too seriously. Fortunately, Dave Knows that "Portlandia may be the high water mark for the national media's obsession with Portland...an ongoing source of amusement to locals since the mid-oughts."[3] At last! Now we Portlandians can finally climb down from our self-absorbed pedestals and get back to the business of living life in an overlooked, thuggish, corrupt, passive-and-non-aggressive, white trash backwater.

Go to story: TV Weekend: Portlandia

Thursday | January 20, 2011

File:Charging stations in SF City Hall 02 2009 02.jpg
Free charging stations in San Francisco. Photo by Felix Kramer.

Free electric car charging stations may soon make electric cars more practical
Already, nine public, free charging stations exist in the Portland Metro area. However, Federal stimulus money will soon be deploying over 1,200 stations in Oregon, concentrating on urban centers from Portland to Eugene. 45 of these will be "fast-charging" stations that can charge a Nissan Leaf (currently on backorder) to 80% in half an hour, while the driver grabs a coffee or meal. Even without charging at home, an electric vehicle driver in Portland wouldn't have to worry about range as they pay a couple bucks (for the parking space) to fully charge their battery for the next 100 miles.

Go to story: Charging stations to reduce ‘range anxiety’

Wednesday | January 19, 2011

The Economics of Happiness screens in Portland at the First Unitarian Church (Main Street Sanctuary: 1011 SW 12th Avenue, Portland, Oregon 97205) on Friday, January 21st, from 7:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m.

The Economics Of Misery vs. The Economics Of Happiness
Failing financial systems, imploding economic bubbles, massive corruption, widespread unemployment, radical wealth concentration, extreme poverty, resource wars. These social plagues and many more are all part of the economics of misery. Characterized by economic and financial "liberalization" (globalization), policies promoting the economics of misery are forcibly imposed on people everywhere by a tiny number of business and political elites. The motivations are as old as civilization: wealth extraction, resource expropriation, power, control, domination. The tactics for realizing these goals have also barely changed over the millennia: distract, suppress, divide and conquer. While this miserable science has certainly imposed untold misery and devastation on humanity from the dawn of civilization forward, it is only in the past three-quarters of a century (or so) that the economics of misery have threatened to snuff out all known life on our planet. Soon it will succeed. But there is another way: the economics of happiness. You have an opportunity to find out more about happier economics from Helena Norberg-Hodge, "an analyst of the impact of the global economy on cultures and agriculture worldwide and a pioneer of the localisation movement." Norberg-Hodge is the founder and director of the International Society for Ecology and Culture (ISEC).[4] She will screen her new film, The Economics of Happiness in Portland at the First Unitarian Church (Main Street Sanctuary: 1011 SW 12th Avenue, Portland, Oregon 97205) on Friday, January 21st, from 7:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m.

Go to web site: The Economics of Happiness
More info: Find a Screening Near You

Tuesday | January 18, 2011

File:IGo by Weehoo Inc.jpg
Should this be illegal?

State bill would outlaw small children in bike trailers
Last week, State Rep. Mitch Greenlick introduced a bill to prohibit children under the age of 6 from riding in trailers behind bikes. Citing an OHSU study that found 5% of bike commuters in 2007 experienced an injury biking that required medical attention, Greenlick stated, "If I thought a law would save one child's life, I would step in and do it. Wouldn't you?" However, the biking community has resoundingly denounced the bill, countering that there was no evidence linking bike trailers to child deaths, and that discouraging family biking would reduce the "safety in numbers" principle, wherein the safety of biking is directly proportional to the number of bicyclists on the road.

PortlandWiki page: HB 2228
Go to story: Rep. Greenlick says safety concerns prompted child biking bill
Go to story: Oregonian Wants To Ban Young Kids From Bikes

Monday | January 17, 2011

Night Of The Spiritually Dead
On Tuesday, April 4, 1967 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. stood before the congregation at Riverside Church in New York City and sealed his own fate, while prophesying the fate about to befall his country. On Thursday, April 4, 1968, exactly one year after delivering Beyond Vietnam--A Time to Break Silence,[5] a sniper's bullet ended King's life. An impassioned and unequivocal condemnation against the depravity of military violence, King's Beyond Vietnam speech stands out as the mightiest antiwar address ever delivered by human oratory. King reminded his audience that time stands still for no person, warning that "over the bleached bones and jumbled residues of numerous civilizations are written the pathetic words, 'Too late.'" Without a "true revolution of values," King warned, our sociopathically violent, hyper-militarized culture would continue "injecting poisonous drugs of hate into the veins of peoples normally humane." A "thing-oriented society" where "machines and computers, profit motives and property rights, are considered more important than people," is a society in which "the giant triplets of racism, extreme materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered," King intoned. Such a culture "cannot be reconciled with wisdom, justice, and love." Most ominously, King admonished Americans that a "nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death." Sadly, it was already "too late." King's mighty pleas and heart-felt admonitions fell silently upon the "bleached bones and jumbled residues" of yet another civilization gone mad.

Go to MLK Day on MLK Blvd.: MLK 16mm movie film screening. MLK Day on MLK Blvd.
Go to MLK Day on MLK Blvd. Facebook fan page: MLK Day on MLK Blvd.
Hear about the Revolutionary MLK: The Revolutionary MLK

Sunday | January 16, 2011

Perhaps you prefer spending your money here.

Portlandians As Easily Duped As Our "Illiberal" Counterparts
Social engineers and consent manufacturing practitioners wept with joy after studies revealed that "progressive" Portlandians are as dull and easily snookered as our nation's most fervent flagwavers. The findings shed light on how citizen "outrage" is manufactured over paltry spending for bike boulevards and bioswales while nary a peep is provoked by the trillions of dollars spent on armaments and defense contractors. The city's bike plan is projected to cost $613 million over the next twenty years. This works out to a twenty-year total of $1,075.44 per Portlandian, or $53.77 per Portlandian per year for the next 20 years.[6] By contrast, military-industrial-Congressional complex expenditures are estimated to cost $1,254,500,000,000 in the upcoming year. This chalks up to $4,086.32 per Portlandian in 2011 alone, an expense that's expected to continue each year until the Pentagon manages to extinguish all lifeforms that might one day present a terrorist "threat."[7]

Go to story: Portland Mayor Sam Adams' bike plan, derailed by politics and bungled sales pitch, rides through controversy
Go to bike plan: Portland Bicycle Plan for 2030

Saturday | January 15, 2011

A very personal appeal from a famous Wikipedian.

Portlandians Celebrate Wikipedia's Tenth Birthday!
And so does PortlandWiki! In fact, PortlandWiki runs on the same wiki software that powers Wikipedia. And if that's not geek enough for you, why not attend a local birthday celebration in honor of Wikipedia? It's happening this evening at AboutUs, 107 SE Washington Street, Suite 520, right here in Portland. Let's celebrate!

Go to story: Happy Birthday Wikipedia
Go to Wikipedia 10th Anniversary Party: Portland page: Wikipedia 10th Anniversary Party: Portland
Go to AboutUs blog: Wikipedia10 Portland celebration at AboutUs, tomorrow!

Friday | January 14, 2011

Solar disk invaders.

Massive Solar Disk To Descend Upon Portlandians
"Take us to your sustainability leaders," is just one of the many demands made by the solar disk's otherworldly pilots. "Pay rents 20% above market rate" and "climb the stairs" and "shiver in wintertime; sweat in summertime" are a few of the others. Rumors that the solar disk invaders come armed with solar flare guns remain unconfirmed.

Go to story: Massive Solar Disk Part of $65 Million Oregon Project

Thursday | January 13, 2011

Feds to Portland: time to start profiling based on religion or political views
After the attempted bomb plot in Pioneer Courthouse Square, it surely is time to call in the FBI to profile Portland religious and political minorities as terrorists. What's that? The FBI were the ones who entrapped Mohamed Mohamud into committing that attempted bomb plot in the first place? Who cares! Muslims and radicals bad!

Go to story: Portland Town Hall Planned On Joint Terrorism Task Force
Go to story: City Hall: Mayor Announces Location for Joint Terrorism Task Force Meeting

Wednesday | January 12, 2011

Bike Trailer Kids - Photo: Howard N2GOT

Greenlick To Bicycle Trailer Pullers: "Lose the kids."
State Rep. Mitch Greenlick (District 33, Northwest Portland/Forest Park) don't want you to pull no trailer full o' li'l tots with no bicycle. Maybe he reckons it's dangerous. Figures some car drivin' fool could run over the little ones, trailer 'n' all. Why don't somebody tell ol' Greenlick he oughta ban humans beings from drivin' them dang fool horseless carriages instead!?! That'll save a coupla lives, at least.

Go to story: Oregon House bills would prohibit wearing headphones, carrying kids under six while biking - Updated

Tuesday | January 11, 2011

Filthy lucre piggies. Photo: Lucias Clay

Filthy Lucre Update!
Last week, PortlandWikiNewsLeakers brought you a report about "a series of workshops about managing money" (Thursday | January 6, 2011 - "Now You Can Learn To Deal With Your Share Of The Root Of All Evil!"). Good news! Now you can learn about handling your filthy lucre from a public sector source: Multnomah County Library. Smart Saving is the library's new financial literacy program that "helps people develop the skills to plan a budget, pay off debt, save for retirement or college, invest, and make sound home buying decisions." The series begins Wednesday, January 12, 2011.[8]

Go to story: Multnomah County Library's Smart Saving

Monday | January 10, 2011

Readers Theatre Repertory Presents Bloody Ordinary

The Banality Of The Bloody Ordinary
Bloody Ordinary is the "controversial examination of American injustice" through a reinterpretation of Harold Pinter's masterpiece, One for the Road. Directed by David Berkson (Readers Theatre Repertory), the story depicts a master interrogator and his torture victims. After the performance, political science professor Norm Diamond will moderate a "talk with" among the audience and the cast. "I wish I could say that this play's subject matter is dated, but unfortunately, it's not," says Berkson, who sees the production as a thought-provoking starting point, rather than an end. Bloody Ordinary opens at Blackfish Gallery (420 NW 9th Ave. | 503-224-2634 | www.blackfish.com) Fri., Jan. 14, 8 p.m. and Sat., Jan. 15, 8 p.m. Admission: $8. More info: www.readerstheatrerep.org.

Go to website: www.readerstheatrerep.org

Sunday | January 9, 2011

Talking with baby.

Infant Babble
Are you a clueless parent when it comes to communicating with your infant? There was a time when human parents mysteriously just knew when their baby was hungry, thirsty, or not feeling well. Perhaps it was instinct, or maybe parents in the olden days just had fewer distractions and spent less time stuck inside their own minds. But none of that matters now because help has arrived. Tiny Talkers workshops promise to "help eliminate the guesswork parents face in trying to teach their kids how to sign." Hey, if Doctor Dolittle could "talk with the animals," perhaps there's hope that modern parents might learn to connect with their own child(ren).

Go to story: Parents Learn to Communicate with Infants - Local Workshop Teaches Parents How to "Talk" to Their Baby Through Sign Language

Saturday | January 8, 2011

Columbia River Driver

Motorists No Longer Drive On Columbia River's Surface
Automobile traffic is a constant menace. It's a source of relentless slaughter of pedestrians, bicyclists, wildlife and even other drivers. In order to acquire fuel supplies, infidels must meddle in faraway lands; evil doers respond by flying jetliners into buildings. But there's at least one thing we can all heave a sigh of relief over: motorists no longer drive across the surface of the Columbia River.

Go to story: It just doesn’t snow like it used to

Friday | January 7, 2011

Citizens reunited.

Getting Elected: It's a dirty job. Can voter-owned elections make it a little cleaner?
Portland's publicly funded campaign system was turned down by voters (50.3 percent to 49.7 percent, according to the Oregonian) in the last election cycle. Perhaps the "nay" 50.3 percent of the vote contained folks who still have faith in corporate-owned elections. Lucky for us, Portlandians may get another chance to choose again. Spencer Burton, a former city council candidate, is leading the effort to put voter-owned elections back on the ballot.

Go to story: Effort to revive publicly funded campaigns launched by former Portland City Council candidate

Thursday | January 6, 2011

Money's evil roots. Illustration: Amy Hood, "Love Of Money Is The Root Of All Evil"

Now You Can Learn To Deal With Your Share Of The Root Of All Evil!
Are you one of those folks who just can't handle your "filthy lucre"? Cheer up! No need to feel ashamed. Both Wall Street and the Pentagon have "money issues" too! Their problem is handling too much...of ours. Now there's hope, at least for you. Portland has someone willing to offer you "a series of workshops about managing money."

Go to blog: Good ¢ents Series, Money Management Workshops
Go to story: Is money the root of all evil?

Wednesday | January 5, 2011

A new lease on light.

Lease Solar For $20 A Month
"Oregonians put off by the high price of renewable energy can now go solar on the cheap, installing panels for no money down. Contractors in a handful of states are starting to offer solar to the masses with lease deals that eliminate upfront costs. Oregon is joining the trend..."

Go to story: Oregon homeowners can now go solar with no upfront costs

Tuesday | January 4, 2011

Large wind turbines.

Portland's Manufacturing Employment Edges Up; Continues To Drop Statewide
Portland ranks No. 21 in total manufacturing employment, though the number of manufacturing plants and industrial jobs statewide declined in 2010. According to Manufacturers News, Portland had 46,787 industrial jobs as of December 2010. Overall, the nation's top ten industrial cities have lost 95,805 manufacturing jobs, or 8.4 percent, since 2008.

Go to story: Ore. manufacturing jobs down 3.3%

Monday | January 3, 2011

Energy use (kg of oil equivalent per capita). Graph: Google Stats

University Of Portland's Green Transportation Initiatives Take Root
At University of Portland more students, faculty and staff are using "greener" transportation modes. Discounted TriMet passes, a University to MAX line shuttle, carpool programs, Zipcars and increased bicycle ridership are all part of the mix. Fifty-seven percent of the University's 3,810 students live on campus.

Go to story: North Portland: University of Portland's green transportation programs breaking records
Go to Public Data Explorer: Google Public Data Explorer

Sunday | January 2, 2011

World primary energy demand by fuel.

"Future Is Black" Asserts Triumphant Will
In a recent op-ed, Washington Post columnist George F. Will found the opportunity give a big "thumbs up" to big coal while offering a backhanded "complement" to Portland ("a green reproach to the rest of us"). Will also pointed out the apparent irony that Oregon and Washington are phasing out coal-fired electrical generation even as Cowlitz County, Washington (just up the road from Portland) has "approved construction of a coal export terminal from which millions of tons of U.S. coal could be shipped to Asia annually." Taking another dig at the presumed eco-poseurs he imagines, Will smirks that "the future looks to greens as black as coal." In that case, the future is also more mountains with their tops savagely ripped off of them, more acid rain, more lung disease, more runaway climate change, more resource wars. Indeed, the future looks as bleak as coal.

Go to story: China has seen the future, and it is coal

New Year's Day | Saturday | January 1, 2011


Happy New Year & Joyride To The World!
From time-to-time, Portlandians may find themselves feeling a teensy bit smug over the breathless accolades routinely laid at the pearly gates of our greenily fragrant Rosebudtown. Portland is frequently praised as the "greenest" or "most sustainable" or even the "most bicycle friendly" city in the United States.[9][10][11] Portland is also widely celebrated for having the foresight to establish an effective Urban Growth Boundary to try and control urban sprawl long before anyone else thought Urban Growth Boundaries were cool.[12] But it took lots more work than merely drawing up urban growth boundaries for Portland to establish its "green cred." And Mia Birk is one of the many who're doing the hard work. For the past twenty years, Birk has helped lead a "crusade to integrate bicycling into daily life."[13] But the fight for "sustainable living" is far from over. For instance, China--once considered "bicycle kingdom"--is now known for sixty mile traffic jams that last for weeks.[14][15] Obviously, there's a lot more work to do. If you need a little inspiration, or just want to know where to start, you can come hear Birk talk about her experiences as she pitches her book at Powell's Books on Burnside this coming Tuesday, January 4th @ 7:30PM.

Go to story: Joyride
Go to Powell's preview: Joyride: Pedaling toward a Healthier Planet