[Carfreeliving] Fwd: [world-carfree-news_eng] WORLD CARFREE NEWS
#23 - AUGUST 2005
dave at livablecity.org
Tue Aug 9 12:08:20 MDT 2005
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>WORLD CARFREE NEWS >>>
>Edition no. 23 - August 2005 - English version
>QUOTATION OF THE MONTH
>- CHINA'S RAGE: THE BICYCLE VERSUS THE AUTOMOBILE
>- US TRANSPORT BILL APPROVED
>- PEAK PLATINUM: THE HYDROGEN CAR
>- TCFC V: BUDAPEST CONFERENCE REPORT
>- VELO MONDIAL 2006, CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA, MARCH 5-10, 2006
>- SUSTAINABLE TRANSPORT NEWS FROM AROUND THE WORLD
>- HAVE YOUR SAY IN IMPROVING THE URBAN ENVIRONMENT
>QUOTATION OF THE MONTH >>
>"A car does a service for a man as it does for a woman. Men need to
>be educated in design. Women need to be educated in the car culture."
> - Genevieve Gorder, television actress, in Celebrity Car Magazine
>IN BRIEF >>
>- Ukranian president Victor Yuschenko has disbanded the country's
>traffic police department because they are too corrupt.
>- In the wake of the attacks on the London Underground, cycling
>trips are up by 50,000 a week.
>- If you walk up to a "drive-thru" window [where people can order
>burgers and coffee without getting out of their cars] at Dunkin'
>Donuts you will not get served.
>- Polish Environment Minister Tomasz Podgajniak called his country's
>plans for a new motorway network behind the times because the
>"automotive industry is not so crucial for the development of the
>economy as it used to be."
>- Chrysler is organising street parties (called "Rock the Block")
>for Chrysler owners only. For US$95 owners can learn cigar rolling
>and improve their golf swing.
>- Denmark's vehicle registration tax is EUR16,000, the highest in Europe.
>- The Indian state of Gujarat, writes the Institute for
>Transportatation and Development Policy, is promoting bike lanes in
>the capital, Ahmedabad.
>- David Piper, the new head of General Motors Powertrain Europe, was
>hit and killed by a car, a day before he was scheduled to assume his
>new duties. He was riding his bicycle.
>WORLD NEWS >>
>CHINA'S RAGE: THE BICYCLE VERSUS THE AUTOMOBILE
>[submitted by Daniel Lerch and edited from "The Washington Post" report]
>A minor traffic incident on a Sunday afternoon in Chizhou, China
>sparked a riot that evolved over eight chaotic hours into an
>"expression of rage against the Chinese Communist Party's new
>fascination with businessmen, profits and economic growth," reports
>the Washington Post.
> The following is the Post's account of what happened:
> Liu Liang, a computer student, was pedaling his bicycle by the
>downtown vegetable market. Driving down the same street was Wu
>Junxing, deputy manager of a hospital.
> Liu's bicycle and Wu's sedan collided, sending Liu crashing to
>the ground. Almost immediately, witnesses said, Liu, 22, and Wu, 34,
>began arguing over who was at fault. In the heat of the dispute,
>they said, Liu damaged one of Wu's side-view mirrors, prompting Wu's
>bodyguards to beat the young man, leaving him bleeding from his
>mouth and ears.
> After they saw what happened to Liu, Chizhou's self-described
>"common people" rose up against what they saw as their local
>government's willingness to side with rich outside investors [Wu was
>not from the area] against Chizhou's own. By the end of the evening,
>10,000 Chizhou residents had filled the streets.
> "When anger boils up in your heart so long, it has to burst,"
>said a Chizhou man who was part of the crowd that night.
> By 5 pm, the mob turned its attention to Wu's sedan, overturning
>it, pummeling it with rocks and then setting it afire with cigarette
>lighters, the witnesses said. Two police cars suffered the same fate
>an hour later, they added, and the police van was also trashed and
> The crowd cheered and shouted at the sight of government vehicles burning.
> Before calm returned to the streets, the disturbance had become a
>political rebellion against the increasingly intimate connection in
>modern China between big money and the Communist government.
>US TRANSPORTATION BILL APPROVED
>The US House of Representatives has approved a US$286.4 billion
>highway and transit bill over the 2004-2009 period, including $50
>billion for bus, train and other transit programs. It is expected to
>be signed into law.
> Despite committed efforts within Congress, says director Anne
>Canby of the Surface Transportation Policy Project, the bill did not
>raise transit's share of total funding, increase eligibility for
>passenger rail investment, or promote more walking and bicycling.
>Under the current bill, 80 percent of the money will go to road
>projects, 18 percent to mass transportation and the remainder to
>transportation safety and other projects, such as $2.3 million for
>landscaping on the Ronald Reagan Freeway in California.
> "Congress also missed several opportunities to help families deal
>with rising gas prices, curb the nation's growing oil dependency and
>accelerate efforts to reduce climate altering emissions," says Canby.
> "This bill takes little action to improve energy security," says
>Michael Replogle, Director of Environment Defense. "More than ever,
>it will be up to state and local officials to put in place
>transportation policy that protects our health and environment."
>PEAK PLATINUM: THE HYDROGEN CAR
>[submitted by Jason Meggs]
>As the car industry puts billions of dollars into developing
>so-called clean hydrogen- powered vehicles, The Financial Times
>reports that "the new fuel comes with its own built-in commodity
> "Today's experimental hydrogen fuel cells use so much platinum
>that there is not enough of the precious metal to replace all the
>world's petrol engines."
> "With the current type of technology we know already that
>platinum supplies will not be sufficient," says Kazuo Okamoto,
>Toyota's new head of research and development.
> "At the current 60 grams or so of platinum in each fuel cell,"
>writes The Financial Times, "the world's 780 million cars and trucks
>would use 46,800 tons of the metal, just below the 47,570 tons
>estimated to be still in the ground"
> "If fuel cells power 80 per cent of cars by 2050, miners will be
>unable to extract platinum fast enough."
> Furthermore, a London Department of Transport study found that
>there are "significant environmental impacts associated with
>platinum mining and refining."
> WORLD CARFREE NETWORK ANNOUNCEMENTS >>
>TCFC V: BUDAPEST CONFERENCE REPORT
>After all of the presentations, workshops and informal meetings over
>food, the fifth Towards Carfree Cities conference in Budapest,
>Hungary, lived up to the standards set by the four previous
>conferences. Clean Air Action Group were excellent hosts and
>organisers, bringing together Hungarian activists and politicians,
>along with international guests. The Hungarian press, television and
>radio media covered the conference extensively.
> At the Annual General Meeting, a new steering committee and
>advisory board were approved. Their profiles are on our website at
> The conference also gave participants the opportunity to develop
>projects, both existing and developing.
> A handful of groups from Poland, Hungary and Slovakia launched
>The Visegrad Mobile Resource Centre, a three-year project, supported
>by the Visegrad Fund, that will see translations of resources into
>Czech, Slovak, Polish and Hungarian, and the creation of a Car
>Busters anthology and a cutting your car use type book, also in
>these four languages.
> There was a meeting for the carfree area pilot project and
>discussions are continuing on-line. A new press working group was
>established, in the hopes of building on the success of the WCN
>publicity campaign about the Bangladeshi rickshaw drivers. Their
>first task will be to react to the current Critical Mass crackdowns
>and police abuse of cyclists in New York City.
> Thanks to Clean Air Action Group for their hard work, and also to
>the Hungarian Young Greens, whose participation and contribution
>made the conference productive and exciting, and gave all a richer
>perspective on life in Budapest.
>VELO MONDIAL 2006, CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA, MARCH 5-10, 2006
>The Velo Mondial 2006 Marketplace is a venue for innovative
>bicycle-friendly, sustainable transport and non-motorised transport
>projects from cities and towns across the world. Velo Mondial would
>like to feature a wide range of projects and research, highlighting
>successes as well as failures, and achievements as well as the
>problems encountered. Presented in case study format, they can be
>projects underway, or recently concluded, or research into the
>impact of projects that have been implemented.
> The deadline to submit an abstract is August 12, 2005 and
>successful authors will be notified by September 23, 2005.
> Visit <www.velomondial2006.com> for further conference
>information and to submit
>SUSTAINABLE TRANSPORT NEWS FROM AROUND THE WORLD
>Interested in staying informed about sustainable transport
>initiatives in the developing world? Check out the Sustainable
>Transport e-Update, published bi-monthly by the Institute for
>Transportation and Development Policy. The e-Update typically offers
>five to eight short news briefs covering regional initiatives
>ranging from Bus Rapid Transit to bicycle safety and planning to
>urban revitalization. The latest issue visits India, Ecuador, China,
>and more. To view the full stories, visit <www.itdp.org/index.html>.
>HAVE YOUR SAY IN IMPROVING THE URBAN ENVIRONMENT
>[submitted by Todd Edelman]
>The European Commission is seeking public opinion on the state of
>the urban environment and how to improve it. The information
>provided by the public will [in theory] form part of the
>Commission's strategy trategy aimed at improving the quality of the
> The consultation document which the public can give comments is
>available in many languages at
> DISCLAIMER >>
>We have heard enough about the hyper-green rhetoric of the hydrogen
>economy, hybrids and sustainabilty. Why does not anyone hype the
>bike-lane economy? Why aren't billions of dollars poured into a high
>tech network of bike lanes? Why did we invent cars anyway?
>- Steven Logan
>World Carfree News is published once a month by World Carfree Network.
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