Where do these people come from? Worrying about rain barrels to save water with huge rivers flowing by? Worrying about fracking when people can't afford to heat their homes? No wonder it's a dying city, led by lemmings racing over every politically correct cliff there is.
As someone who mentored and coached students at Seton LaSalle, Mr. Lee should think twice before criticizing someone for earning master's degree from a great university. It IS possible to be well educated and dedicated to your community without losing your roots which is exactly what Ms. Rudiak has demonstrated.
What an antiquated view - "if you're not using natural gas you're using coal". It's far pass time when we stop using both.
Why should the oldest mountains on the planet be blown up while the people who live in Appalachia have their lives destroyed and the ecological system is irreparably damaged by mountain top removal?
Why too should our neighbors, ourselves, have their air, soil, and water poisoned by this extremely dangerous process called fracking? Why should the food our local farmers grow be grown in that poisoned soil, watered with poisoned water? Why should the cows, pigs, and chicken that are fed to our children along with the fruit and veggies be soaked in fracking filth?
Why? Because too many want to bow to the greedy sociopathic industrial monster that is the fossil fuel industry. And for what? To fill up offices???
Maybe the biggest issue is that we've crossed into uncharted territory as far as carbon levels in the atmosphere. We're going above 400 ppm this summer. 350 ppm is the danger zone and we may see 450 during spikes this summer.
Is the future of the planet worth filling a few more office buildings?
For those in need there is also the GLBT National Hotline 888-843-4564 and the GLBT National Youth Talkline 800-246-PRIDE (7743). There is also an online peer chat option at GLBThotline.org/chat
Oh and LGBT is gay. Just saying.
once again, CP picking and choosing what they wanna print. Only info on Democrats. never anything on any other party.
I believe you, Bram. Wagner's evolution is fine, but this is 2013 and we've already been down this path with Dan Onorato who couldn't see fit to provide domestic partner benefits for his own employees (and now works for a health insurance company) in spite of his professed evolution.
Thank you for publishing this. The Trevor Project is an amazing resource. Persad Center is also doing outreach into rural communities, but I think that PFLAG tends to be the trail blazers and thank God for them!
Evolution is right. 2010: "I believe that marriage is between one man and one woman." http://is.gd/O97JdC He also told me during a phone interview only a few weeks ago that he still opposes marriage equality because it interferes with the Church's prerogatives, but who's going to believe me?
What about the other candidates?
Bill, (sorry for the pause as I was away for a funeral), I'm not sure what you mean by engineering know-how we don't already have. I don't purpose using anything we can't already accomplish only that we use the knowledge we have to do what we must in a thoughtful and appropriate way.
I can see your point about most people living/working/etc in existing buildings and you're right that more gain may be made through retrofitting but that only really applies to short-term gains. Too I think we must step back and look at each of those gains and ask if we're not wasting resources by retrofitting buildings that are inappropriately built or inappropriately located (for their building style). I think we'll find that to be the case far more often than not.
We do a similar thing with our roads, we insist that a road must go in a certain place so we shore up really bad design with over-engineered techniques that, when they inevitably fail, usually due to age but also sometimes due to math errors, the failure is spectacular.
Additionally we take for granted that the patched up bandaged together mess will hold and that it's the proper thing to do rather than look for a more sound place to put a road. I don't think we need to go to extremes like in China where they just push people and historic places out of the equation and build where they want but are at the opposite end of that far too often.
I don't mean to be argumentative and appreciate your writing and editing. I just believe we really need to push ourselves as a society and I'm not sure that caulk and insulation does that and they seem to be just another feel-good short-term semi-solution that doesn't make us take any real action to correct for our massive design shortfalls.
Too both caulk and insulation are usually made of fossil fuels and insulation when rolled or even if it's blown in (but not in foam form) has a tendency to slump and collapse reducing efficiency. Caulk can fail in just a few years due to temp fluctuation and bigger swings is becoming really common.
I just think we take too much comfort in band-aids and they allow us to not be thoughtful. I don't think there is an easy solution and I don't think we can do what needs to be done without a massive shift and massive attention.
Don, I agree with you philosophically and much of what you say can be implemented practically too. My approach on this story, however, was guided by the knowledge that on any pertinent time frame, we have to assume that most of the buildings people will be living and working in will be buildings that exist now, not the better ones we can certainly build, including along plans you outline. That was why I focused on retrofitting -- that and the fact that the 90x50 plan is largely based on simply using less by insulating better, and doesn't require any engineering know-how we don't already have. But thanks for your comments.
Shadyside has 1700 bus trips per week, about the same as Oakland, and more than any other place in the city outside of the Golden Triangle. Yet it is illegal to build a residential unit in either place without providing a parking space, and illegal to build large units without multiple spaces for each unit.
That's really, really dumb. To make it even dumber, the city waves one car space if the builder provides bicycle spaces in the garage, as if people want to trust good bicycles to public garages when they can just bring them indoors.
They could have just eliminated the parking requirements and charged for street parking, with the revenue going directly to a Shadyside or Oakland Improvement District, but the zoning board never lets go, and the people who already park free in these neighborhoods would rather keep other people out than pay something themselves - even if the money went back to their own community.
People talk a green game, but nobody wants to make the sensible tough decisions that might antagonize someone.
Since you are tying this into the mayor's race:
The right way to "go green" is by taxing resource consumption and pollution, not by subsidizing technologies whose only merit is that they will "pollute less." Subsidies cause people do consume more energy, while taxes on energy cause them to consume less.
The greenest, most sustainable form of energy is human energy, and Jack Wagner is the only candidate who lowered the wage tax, a tax on human energy. He also shifted the property tax onto land values, which not only saves money for most home owners, but encourages the efficient use of land. It is endorsed by the Green Parties of the United States, Canada, Scotland, England, and other countries.
Peduto voted to repeal the land value tax. To be fair, he did this in the face of the county's truly awful land value assessments, but he did nothing to challenge those assessments. To be fair again, doing so would put him in a bind, because the core of his council district (Shadyside and Squirrel Hill) are the most under-assessed wards in the city.
Peduto talks a good green game, but when it came to greening Pittsburgh's tax system, Wagner didn't just talk about it; he did it. He has also been campaigning on making Pittsburgh's assessments honest.
We need to break out of this industrial mindset when it comes to building. The Pittsburgh Region could lead a natural building revolution by adopting what code is out there for things like cob, straw bale, compressed earth, and other natural building types. This in turn could help our region become stronger, more secure, and more prosperous from the bottom to the top.
I'm going to help build a straw bale home in Wheeling WV in May, there was a straw bale home built way back in the early 2000's out in Beaver County, there are 3 local couples plus my wife and I that are going to build straw bale homes in the next few years.
We have projects like Garfield Community Farm where they're building a bio-shelter and are already helping to feed the community.
We've got people working on plans to break streams and storm-water gullies out from the concrete encasements that leads to things like the Washington Blvd disaster. We've got other urban farms and plots helping to feed people like the North Hills group that voluntarily farms for people with food security problems. These are systems that need to come together and that can so our region is stronger, safer, cleaner, less fossil fuel reliant, and ready for coming resource scarcity.
Look, if we're going to get out of the mess that industrialization caused we can't solve it by using industrial methods. I'm not saying we need to adopt an Amish model but we need to recognize that proper design - passive solar, water-harvesting, living, natural systems are the path forward. We can't engineer our way out of this, we've engineered our way into it and only by looking at ecological solutions will we find our way forward.
The earth provides us with all we need to build. Rocks, Trees, straw, reeds, sand, clay, and water. With just these things and proper design principals and building codes we could build an abundant world. Dwellings are one thing and they're important but we also need to look at the larger picture.
We need water security and the more locally we can harvest it the better. Imagine not having to have PWSA ripping your street up every few years. It'd be possible if we began to harvest our own water and treat our own waste - this isn't a fantasy, it can be done and it's not dangerous. We have an understanding that we lacked when we began to flush everything away. We just need to be willing to change the regulations and be more responsible for ourselves.
We need food security and that comes easiest when we grow our own food. Gardens in the place of lawns should be encouraged, chemical lawn treatments should be illegal, and more small scale urban agriculture as well as planting of food crops on vacant and public land should be encouraged. Imagine walking down the street in the spring and picking mullberries or serviceberries - oh that's right, if you live in Polish Hill you don't have to imagine it because you can! We need more of that everywhere.
Ok, I've written a lot and I'll stop now but the point is - industrial design is not the path forward, it begets more problems than it solves, ecologically designed systems are the way forward.
So, how are those solar panels on the White House coming, Mr. President?
Will they pave the roads too?
This is great! But I hope they're thinking about bike lanes!
Dude, getting reprimanded for using the word "fart"? Sounds like Nutting drinks the same Kool-Aid that the Scaifes (Tribune-Review) do...I won't give the Pirates my money -- for anything. I kind of have the same love-hate relationship with the Yankees -- I worked in the front office from '84 to '92 (no, we weren't very good then, but nothing like these under-achievers)...you tend to always love the uniform, the stadium, the experience of your first baseball team, but the business of baseball is pathetic...The Angels sign Pujols & Hamilton in consecutive years? A fake salary cap (if you can exceed it with penalties it ain't a cap), but , more importantly, no minimum payroll. I actually read a column in the Boston Globe the other day in which they advocated for a uniformity of rules between the leagues -- and, get this, insisted that the NL add the DH! The DH is pointless. We already saw the return to "small ball" after the steroid ban and the game is just better when a manager has to consider pulling his pitcher every 9 batters. Anyway, I used to beat on Huntingdon (calling him their 12 year old G.M.) until a long-time fan asked me if I could do any better working for the Nuttings...'nuf said.
Between bikeshare and the ConnectCard, it's going to be a lot easier to be a tourist in Pittsburgh.
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