March 27, 2019
If you jam on the brakes for just a minute and take a look at cars and car culture, you just might find something stinky (maybe even as stinky as the black plume of diesel exhaust emanating from that souped-up pickup truck you’re stuck behind). Yes, there are some upsides to cars and driving, but those are overshadowed by the unbelievable downsides. Do you know how many deaths — of people and animals — can be attributed to the automobile? How about cars’ contribution to total greenhouse gas emissions? Have you ever thought deeply about how car culture can diminish the quality of ordinary life experiences? Luckily, there’s a straightforward (albeit not as straight and forward as the typical section of interstate highway) way to improve how we get ourselves from place to place.
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- UC Davis professor and transportation expert Daniel Sperling on the Daily Show with Jon Stewart
- Statistics on U.S. car sales by type, showing how few non-gasoline/diesel vehicles are sold
- Edward Hume’s article in The Atlantic titled “The Absurd Primacy of the Automobile in American Life“
- Clive Thompson’s article in Smithsonian Magazine titled “When Pedestrians Ruled The Streets“
- Summary of roadkill statistics
- U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, by sector, showing the contribution of emissions from personal transportation
- Marvin Harris, cultural materialism, and why we have a hard time imagining a different way to live