Friday, January 23, 2009

You are here

The Global Environmental Monitoring unit of the European Commission has hust published a nifty, if somewhat despressing, map of the travel time to major cities, which they use as a surrogate measure of "accessibility." Even without seeing the map you can probably guess what the U.S. looks like: mostly bright yellow, which symbolizes travel times of one hour or less.

While accessibility itself is not necessarily a problem, the ways in which we achieve accessibility in this current era are. Road networks, in particular, are a disaster for the natural world, causing problems for wild nature in ways ranging from chemical contamination, spread of exotic species, habitat fragmentation, habitat loss, and outright mortality from contruction and roadkill.

Hopefully, the future will bring modes of transportation that don't jeopardize the natural world or destroy the presence of wild nature. Hey, it's a new political era in the U.S.; I can dream, can't I?

1 comment:

Arya Degenhardt said...

This made me think of a recent email I got from Patagonia Inc. that highlights their current "Freedom to Roam" campaign. Check it out here: