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What’s Your Idea For Emissions Reduction? The Keeling Curve Prize | #CleanTechnica Exclusive

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CleanTechnica

Idea! Let’s Bring The USA 30–100 Years Back In Time!

If you’re a thinking person, you know that the USA was once a wonderful utopia of happiness, economic prosperity, equality, and a tremendously high quality of life — maybe 30 years or so ago, maybe 40 or 50, maybe 100. I don’t know when, but I do know one thing — it was once a paradise like you can’t even imagine today

Idea! Let’s Bring The USA 30–100 Years Back In Time! was originally published on CleanTechnica.

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CleanTechnica

Is a fracking ban a good idea?

one of those grassroots anti-fracking groups. “There is absolutely no way to handle the waste.” Groups like hers are particularly concerned about polluted wastewater that’s generated during the fracking process, which is often injected back …
fracking wastewater – BingNews

Shell Concedes That Drilling Off the Alaskan Coast Is a Really Bad, Really Expensive Idea

The Chukchi Sea, the area in question, is known for its tempestuous, icy, wavy, dangerous conditions that all make drilling really tough. Even more, it’s really far away, expensive, and a very messy problem to clean up in the event of an oil spill.
drilling leak – read more

California has no idea what’s in its fracking chemicals; still using fracking wastewater for crops

California is in the fourth year of its epic drought. Since about 50% of produce in US is grown in California, including alfafa for animal feed; file this under things you wish you didn’t know about. California is a huge market for hydraulic fracking, and …
fracking wastewater – read more

California Has No Idea What’s In Its Fracking Chemicals, Study Finds

The study, carried out by the California Council on Science and Technology (CCST), recommended state agencies ban the reuse of wastewater from hydraulic fracturing — or fracking — for any use that could impact human health, the environment, wildlife …
fracking wastewater – read more

Here’s An Idea: Tax Drivers Instead Of Raising LA Metro Fares


Originally published on Gas 2.

public-hearing

After a lovely 20 mile ride through the scenic LA river bike path, the spacious Forest Lawn Drive, the terrifying Highland Blvd freeway off-ramp and into Hollywood for a party, we decided to take the Metro home. Home is downtown Los Angeles, DTLA to the locals, and one can definitely say “all roads lead to home” when home is DTLA.

On this particular Metro ride, though, we saw this poster advertising an upcoming public hearing about a fare hike. Being one of the 90% of Angelenos who rarely takes the Metro, I was unaware of this hike. On March 29th, I plan to be at that hearing, being heard. While it’s great that they’re doing away with charging for transfers, it shouldn’t be at a cost that could send this brand-new subway system the way of the old Red Car line.

But first, let me take a moment to introduce my readers to 21st century Los Angeles. Yes, 20th century Los Angeles was a car town, but now in 2014 we actually have 87 miles of rail serving a whopping 3.5% of the county’s residents. If you limit it to LA City, instead of the entire 4,752 sq miles of the county, it’s more like 9.2% of the population. So yes, we have a subway system, started in 1990, but most Angelenos would rather sit around and waste money on gas and things like tickets for texting while driving than discover what lies beneath the traffic.

DTLA traffic 11020th Century LA

Once upon a time, Los Angeles had over 1,000 miles of rail lines. Then they suffered a “revenue shortfall” and replaced those rail lines with buses provided by the likes of General Motors. Now that Los Angeles’ population has skyrocketed exponentially, people are starting to rediscover the appeal in mass transit and options other than cars. This is good, considering we’re estimated to add another 2.4 million sun-worshippers by 2030.

Yet LA Metro wants to nip all that in the bud and be sure we’re happy in our shiny little cages, err cars. Rather than do something sensible, like charge a congestion tax to subsidize the Metro, they’re proposing a fare hike. A fare hike on the means of transportation most needed by the city’s poorest, at a time when this mode of transit is becoming more popular!

We’ve built this gorgeous metro system that travels far and wide, is fast, and pleasant to ride. Yet most Angelenos don’t have much of an incentive to discover it, aside from poverty or a DUI. Some companies offer transit vouchers, but that’s really not enough. There need to be more disincentives to driving than just the risk of being caught staring at your phone or smoking a joint. Yes, many Angelenos find driving so unbearable they have to get stoned WHILE they’re doing it. It’s a bad scene man, and it’s not getting any better.

As the map above shows clearly, there are enough wealthy people driving into DTLA to subsidize the Metro system, and if that sounds too socialist for you, well, think of it as an incentive for people who want to drive their cars without traffic. Every potential driver on the Metro system is one less driver on our clogged highway system.

So how can we inspire more people to take the transit while keeping costs down? By adding a $ 12.50/month tax to parking cost, the city could pay the $ 36.8 million the Metro will need by 2016 and inspire more people to go metro. That’s the cost of about three gallons of gas, and taking the Metro also adds an extra level of peace of mind, even for the well-off.

Taking the Metro sure beats having to pack safety cones in your Lambo…

DTLA Lambo parking

Here’s An Idea: Tax Drivers Instead Of Raising LA Metro Fares was originally published on CleanTechnica. To read more from CleanTechnica, join over 50,000 other subscribers: Google+ | Email | Facebook | RSS | Twitter.


CleanTechnica

Pedicab Company (Green Business Idea)


Originally published on Ecopreneurist.

pedicabIf you love riding your bike, interacting with people, and being able to work outside and set your own hours, then one green business idea to consider is starting a pedicab company. Depending on your location, a pedicab ride can appeal to customers in different ways, whether it’s being able to choose a fossil-fuel-free form of transport, or to support other fellow cyclists, or the desire to have a more visceral transportation experience.

1. What is a pedicab company?

A pedicab is similar to a taxi, where customers pay someone to take them somewhere, except their cab is pulled by bicycle. Pedicab companies exist in many progressive cities where you might expect them, such as New York City and Seattle, but their appeal, charm, and low cost of startup has helped create pedicab companies in places such as Salt Lake City, Utah, and Franklin, Tennessee.

2. What required knowledge or skills are necessary?

Bike maintenance and repair skills are essential in this kind of business, from being able to quickly do a very basic repair, such as patch a flat tire, to handling the daily and weekly maintenance that will need to be done to your pedicab.  Pedicab operators also need strong legs and healthy lungs, and a hardy disposition that will let you ride in all types of weather. You would also benefit from having a charismatic and entertaining personality that enjoys meeting new people, as tips will greatly improve if you’re an engaging ‘people person’. Sales skills will come in handy as you begin to sell advertising space on the cab itself, and basic marketing knowledge can help you get the word out about your pedicab services.

3. How much money is required to start?

$ $ (on a scale of $ to $ $ $ $ $ ) At the very least, you’ll need to purchase the pedicab itself, and while there may be used pedicabs on the market, you’ll want to be prepared to invest enough in it that it won’t be a constant source of mechanical frustration (and expenses) for you. As a pedicab driver, you’ll be spending most of the day in the saddle, so spending some money on comfortable clothes and a good bike saddle will be very much worth it at the end of a long day of pedaling. A business license is a minimal expense, and one that needs to be paid in order to stay on the right side of the law. Some cities also require insurance for pedicabs, which can vary considerably in cost and scope of coverage.

4. What is the income potential?

$ $   (on a scale of $ to $ $ $ $ $ ) A pedicab company may make the most of their income during certain times of the year and certain times and days of the week, depending on the local climate and clientele. Some pedicab companies specialize in being the designated driver on weekend nights in areas with a lot of bars and nightclubs, and some may focus on sightseeing tours during the days. Another determining factor is the size of the pedicab you drive, because if you have a larger model, and you can charge by the passenger and not the trip, it may end up being more lucrative than doing more trips with fewer people.

5. What is the best location for a pedicab company?

Urban (best), semi-urban (very good), suburbs (poor), rural (poor).  You also want to find a place to work that’s relatively flat. Pedaling a pedicab up a hill with several riders is not an easy task, so consider the routes that are most feasible for you. An area with a large concentration of potential customers, such as the city center or near transit hubs, can yield more riders with less effort.

6.  Four best questions to ask yourself to find out if this business is right for you (if you can answer yes to all four, this business might be for you):

  • Do you love to ride a bicycle?
  • Are you in good shape?
  • Are you a good ‘people person’ and have a good sense of humor?
  • Do you have bike mechanic skills?

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Pedicab Company (Green Business Idea) was originally published on: CleanTechnica. To read more from CleanTechnica, join over 30,000 other subscribers: RSS | Facebook | Twitter.


CleanTechnica

Who Needs College? Young Entrepeneuer Bets On Bright Idea For Solar Energy

Eden Full dropped out of Princeton to found a startup company that brings the solar panel technology she invented to developing countries as part of a fellowship. The unusual program, funded by tech entrepreneur Peter Thiel, gives young people $ 100,000 to skip college and focus on their work and research instead.

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Kristin Lynch: Fracking is a bad and dangerous idea for California – Inside Bay Area

Kristin Lynch: Fracking is a bad and dangerous idea for California
Inside Bay Area
Hydraulic fracturing, more widely known as fracking, is the risky method of forcing millions of gallons of water, sand and often undisclosed chemicals into the ground at extremely high pressure to break up rock formations to release oil and gas. The

and more »

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