The End of Suburbia

We are truly facing interesting times. The buildup of the last 75 years of our existence has been towards where we are now. We live in the suburbs, away from the centers of our cities and too far away to walk anywhere we need to go each day. If you don't have a car in the states you can't live or work, you can't purchase groceries or interact with anyone but your closest neighbors, whom you probably don't even know very well.

If this topic interests you, this video is one of the better documentaries covering the current fuel crisis and how it will affect us most:

(Google video removed, I've replaced it with this YouTube trailer for the movie.)

I think that Americans are probably not going to accept that things will have to change until it's too late. We have already had a fuel crisis in the 70's and because of that experience, we think we know how these things end... With cheaper gas than we had before, upgrades to SUV's and the creation of not only more suburbs, but "burbs" beyond those. I know people who have commuted over 60 miles a day one way.

The video mentions that in the coming decades (or even just years), we'll have to adjust to a more centralized urban living and work because there is no replacement for the fuels we burn to maintain the distance focused lifestyle.

My hope is that we are able to replace our current gasoline and natural gas infrastructure enough with a new electricity based system that would allow for central generation of power with remote distribution in such a way that we might still maintain remote living capability.

We need to build or enhance infrastructure to pipe electricity into our precious burbs in enough capacity to run not only homes but cars as well. There rae great hybrids in place now, but I see compressed air cars and full electrics being commonplace in the not too distant future.

Of course, there is always the diesel tree. Perhaps the way to a more fuel hungry lifestyle and bigger SUV's is going green after all. ;-)


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