Climate care gone mad!

A Danish newspaper published a piece (in Danish) on their webpage today, detailing how the local council in the Danish capital city, Copenhagen, want to limit the amount of “green time” at intersections leading into the city, on days when there’s a lot of smog. The stated intent is to reduce particle and CO2 pollution, simply by measuring their air pollution and turning the lights red for longer when it reaches a certain limit.

Of course, the person in political charge of the project put a lot of emphasis on the supposed CO2 benefit, making it completely apparent that he hasn’t grasped thing one about CO2 emissions. Driving 10 miles with no traffic jam lets out far less CO2 than driving 10 miles with half an hour of queuing in the middle. People could turn off their engines, sure, but they’re not going to – the queue is likely to be moving ever so slightly once a minute, so turning off the engine would be a waste.

Sure, the particle situation in the inner city might improve. A little. But it’d get a lot worse for the people who’ve chosen to live out of town to get better air, and unless people’s habits change, and they start using public transport – yeah right – it’ll worsen the effect of the cars on the environment, not make anything better.

If you really want to make people use public transportation, improve that, and make it more reliable, instead of just trying to make the potential users’ lives miserable. If public transportation isn’t worth switching to from your car – then that’s because it simply isn’t good enough!

2 thoughts on “Climate care gone mad!

  1. radiac

    And I thought our politicians were dumb – that’s amazing! Am sure I read somewhere that starting and stopping the engine has a petrol overhead too, so I guess that wouldn’t help either.

    Bit like the green taxes that our government insist on slapping on everything, but without putting any money into alternative forms of transport – it’s clearly got nothing to do with the environment and is just to grab headlines. Or in our case, to cover the budget shortfall they are now panicking about because they’ve only just realised that by spending all our reserves in a strong economy, they haven’t saved anything to get us through the imminent recession. So now they will help inflation by increasing taxes. And then rig the basket to claim that inflation hasn’t been at 33% over the past year; it’s a coincidence that everything now costs 33p/£ more, we just don’t understand the complicated maths.

    The only thing that will sort out the climate is one of two things: we invent a pollution-free way of generating energy, or a meteor hits and wipes us all out before we can do any more long-term damage. We’re therefore completely screwed.

  2. mihtjel Post author

    We already have a bunch of ways of generating energy without letting out CO2 and other polutants – nuclear power is one very obvious one; solar, wind and hydro-power are others. But nuclear is the one that shows by far the largest potential to help reduce the base load on the fossil fuel based power plants. Unfortunately, people – and politicians in particular – are far too scared of it, because of a crappy built Soviet reactor that blew up.

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