“You Don’t Need Us To Tell You That Gas Prices Are Back On The Rise.”

Gas prices on the rise - The Conan O'Brien ShowHere’s a funny video from The Conan O’Brien Show of newscasters repeating the same line about rising gas prices. The clip originally aired in February 2013 and in each case, “You don’t need us to tell you that gas prices are back on the rise” was played off as bad news. At Jubbling, that same repeated line is stated a little differently: “You don’t need to tell us that. Gas prices are on the RISE!” (Drive less.) [CDCW]


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Lessons Learned From Eco-Cities In China.

Tianjin Eco-City Tianjin Eco-City - Solar panels in front of building.Wouldn’t it be great if we could have a do-over? China has been looking to redo by re-thinking their future cities and developing eco-cities like Tianjin Eco-city. When it’s complete some time after 2020, Tianjin Eco-city will be home to 350,000 residents where 90% of in-city travel can be accomplished by foot, bike or public transportation. Green buildings will be the norm and renewable power will supply 15% of the eco-city’s electricity needs. What’s the motivation? From the NY Times:

“Today, facing challenges like runaway urbanization, soaring energy consumption and environmental degradation, China is hoping to establish a different set of paragons. With its cities expected to swell by another 350 million residents in the next 25 years, according to World Bank estimates, the government is scurrying to find sustainable urban solutions. To that end, it hopes to have 100 model cities, 200 model counties, 1,000 model districts and 10,000 model towns by 2015.”

One interesting fact about the Tianjin Eco-city project is that when construction started in 2008, EV charging stations where never included in the plans. Maybe a good lesson that can be learned from China’s experience is to build future eco-cities that are simple and flexible. They didn’t plan for electric vehicles and now, just like every non eco-city, they have to update their infrastructure to account for them.

Check out the NYT article for more information on the goals and challenges of building an eco-city. [NY Times]

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Bicycle Barometer: Bike Or Ride Train To Work?

Bicycle Barometer by Richard J. PopeThe Bicycle Barometer by Richard J. Pope is doing more than just tracking the weather to determine the best way to get to work each day – it’s also receiving information about his local rail station (open/close, delayed) and the amount and type of precipitation. Mr. Pope made the Bicycle Barometer from an old clock he found at a flea market and he’s posted information on his site so DIY’ers in the UK can build their own. [OFTCC via Neatorama]


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Cat Rides Under A Train For 1700 Miles. Travels On Intercity Train 85 Times Further Than Average American.

Polly the train riding cat.Polly the cat took a 1700 mile trip in the underbelly of an intercity train in the UK. From This is Plymouth:

“A missing Plymouth cat belonging to a retired train driver has been rescued from an inter-city train – after stowing away in the undercarriage for 1,700 miles.

Polly the tabby, who had a badly-broken leg, is thought to have climbed on board the high speed express near her home in Plymouth. She then spent two days trapped under the front carriage as the train thundered between the West Country, London and South Wales.

The two-year-old was discovered when train manager Emily Mahoney-Smith heard her miaowing when the train stopped briefly on its way to Cornwall.”

Polly did lose a leg out of the deal but thanks to her microchip, she will be reunited with her family in Plymouth.

Per capita, Americans travel 20 miles/per year on intercity trains so Polly basically kicked our collective non-train riding butts times 85 in just two days. Yes, she lost a leg but that’s because she made her trip riding under an intercity train. Imagine how far Polly could’ve gone on the train if she had her own seat. [This is Plymouth and Abroath via Neatorama]


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Chicago’s Parking Meters Will Charge $6.50/Hour In 2013. Chicagoans Should ‘Stick It To The Man’ By Using Mass Transit Instead.

Parking meter in Chicago.I know I’m not the only one who hates driving into the big city only to be tethered to a parking meter. Parking meters remind us each time that we should’ve taken the bus, subway or train. If the parking rates are reasonable, we look past the inconvenience and continue to drive into the city.

Chicago is different. Currently, their downtown parking meter rates are the highest in the country at $5.75/hour and they’re going up in 2013 to $6.50/hour. The city is not benefiting by the increased rates but Jubbling will. Hopefully the new higher rates will discourage more people from driving into downtown Chicago and encourage them to travel by bus or train. [CBS Chicago]

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‘Exxon Hates Your Children’ Video

What can you do? Drive less. It doesn’t matter what you drive – once a week, pick one trip you’d normally take with your car and instead carpool, ride the mass transit or avoid the trip/drive altogether. [Grist]

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