Tag Archives: transportation infrastructure

The Hidden Costs of Drought

Barge on the Mississippi River

Photo Credit: Roger Smith via Compfight cc

Shipping on the Mississippi River has returned to normal levels after a threatened shutdown due to the drought, but the scare exposed one more way our food supply is vulnerable to extreme weather events.

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The Bike Superhighways of Denmark

Today, cycling is part of Copenhagen’s culture. Bikes are everywhere! But there was a time when vehicle traffic clogged Denmark’s capital city’s roads. In the 1970s Denmark faced an energy crisis, a recession, and increasing car traffic congestion. The public demanded better transportation infrastructure and options.

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By the Numbers

Currently 50 million households suffer from food insecurity, meaning that family members cannot always meet their basic food needs.

10 million people a year could be fed through the recovery of just one-fifth of food waste.

Only 2% of food waste is composted or otherwise recycled—62% of paper is recycled.

Consumers throw out about 40% of the fresh and frozen fish they buy.

The U.S. produced 208 pounds of meat per person in 2009—60% more than Europe.

Low income commuters spend a much higher proportion of their wages on gas—8.6% versus 2.1% at $4 per gallon.

Food prices rose 35-40 percentage points between 2002–2008.

Americans consume 25% of the world’s produced oil, but our nation holds less than 3% of the world’s proven oil reserves.

The International Energy Agency says greenhouse gas emissions rose 3.2% last year, with a 9.3% increase in China offsetting declines in the US and EU.

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