NC Media Watch

A quest for reason and accuracy in letters to the editor, guest editorials and other issues of interest to the citizens of Western Nevada County.

Monday, November 28, 2005

City Councilman caught in a dream world

Dean Williams’ Other Voices: It’s time to look for a new kind of neighborhood, November 26, 2005
Butler was reporting on a presentation by Richard Heinberg about the supply and demand for oil. I also attended the talk, and I agree with Butler that Heinberg is not a kook. His lecture was clear and his statements were well supported.
But, did Heinberg present all the facts? Did he outline the capacity of Canadian oil sands and US oil share to provide another 200 plus years of gasoline. How can Heinberg know how much oil is controlled by state owned oil companies, in Mexico, Venezuela, Niger, Iraq, etc., that do not report this data. Lets take Iraq for example:
Of Iraq’s 74 discovered and evaluated oil fields, only 15 have been developed. Iraq’s western desert is considered to be highly prolific but has yet to be explored. There are 526 known structures that have been discovered, delineated, mapped and classified as potential prospects in Iraq of which only 125 have been drilled. Six of the 74 known fields are deemed giant, containing more than 5 billion barrels, while some 23 are classified as large (between 500 million-5 billion barrels) and the remaining 45 labeled as medium (50-500 million barrels) to small (less than 50 million barrels)
Was this in Heinberg’s "clear well supported" report?
Of course, the lack of interior roads is not a problem for households that do not own an automobile. According to the U.S. Census, that is 14 percent of households in Grass Valley (9 percent in California and 10 percent in the nation). For those who do own a car, but intend to drive less frequently, the extra walking distance from parking space to home is not a significant inconvenience.
Dean should have looked a little deeper in to the Census report and its companion report 2001 National House Hold Travel Survey. The survey found that if rural citizens own a car, 5.3 percent walk, 0.6 cycle, and 0.1 take transit. Of the non car owners, 20.9 percent walk, 3.5 percent cycle, and 1.0 percent take transit. The remaining 74.6 catch rides with friends who have cars. Changing the housing design will not get people out of their cars.
We can avoid unnecessarily aggravating traffic congestion by designing new neighborhoods to be truly pedestrian-oriented and building them near existing schools, stores and job centers.
Really! Lets take the Co-Housing case. If the Bonanza Market were to close, where would these walkers get their food? SPD is a long walk lugging four bags of groceries How do they get hardware, the nearest hardware store in in Glenbrook. Woman cloths, not in Nevada City unless it is at high priced boutiques

It is time for Dean William get real on the housing issues. He is living in a dream world.

For a private comment to Russ or George, for public comment select comments below.

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