Tag Archives: sustainability

running for life, recallquan status, bloggers, future

2H March 2012 Update

Tabling for New, Better Mayor

I witnessed two gents tabling for the Recall Oakland Mayor Quan campaign by the Downtown Marriott last weekend.  A good spot to camp out – many Oakland Marathon registrants passed by. Other highlights:

  • Rain
  • plenty of takers though at the booth
  • donuts and cookies provided by moi
  • every weekend at farmers market near you!


If you’re into sustainability thoughts and trends, you might read up on how Ancient China kept up its transport mobility mojo in an era of post-asphalt roads during a time when Ancient Europe failed to do similarly. With a Chinese wheelbarrowWell – it’s true the ‘peons used Roman paved roads for a millenia, but it was all dirt roads from there. What’s this got to do with the East Bay? Continue reading

Sustainability: Rainwater Catchment Event 3/20

This March 20th at  Temescal’s Claremont DMV, get your taxpayer subsidized rainbarrel(s)! Save winter rain for dry summer use. Cut down reliance on diesel pumped water from the San Pablo Dam and wherever else your water comes from.  (Do you know where your tap water comes from?)

Rich and middle-class homeowners, and renters with sizable patios or balconies, click here.

Are cities really sustainable?

One of my colleagues recently presented on sustainability and urban planning in Vancouver. This led me to think of what I’ve been reading lately. Not libatious poetry about cities or google eyed narratives in Next American City magazine, but some naysaying.

I’ve read a bit of city naysaying recently. One critique of cities is that they absorb quite a bit of bio capacity from other areas, requiring transport. Meaning, we cannot have Hong Kongs every 100 miles. Not at HK’s current scale.

For Rome in 2,000 years ago this would have meant moving food and lumber from outlying areas, France and even Africa back to Rome. Intercity trade without capital flight can be good, but ecologically speaking if there is one metropolis pulling in resources from everywhere, that probably cannot last long before exhaustion from human population growth and increasing resource use per capita.

This reminds me of something one of my friends said once, that urban is the conceit of stretching (bending) natural limits. I agree that urban constitutes the “extend and pretend” that we are separate from nature. Apart from wilderness.

Continue reading