Saturday, April 15, 2006

Cars are a problem. Transport, particularly road transport, is a major contributor to the production of greenhouse gasses which contribute to global warming. It is estimated that for every gallon of oil used about 19 pounds of carbon dixoide go into the atmosphere. Cars can make you sick. They produce polluting gasses, at certain concentrations these irritate the eyes and nose and respiratory system and can be carcinogenic.

Cars are noisy. Traffic is the major source of noise in cities. The noisiest of all are the heavy goods vehicles and the number of these are expected to double by 2015. Noise can damage hearing, disrupt sleep and increase stress and blood-pressure.

Cars take up a lot of space. Up to 10% of the arable land in the US is taken up by car transport. It's estimated that in the 1960s in the US up to 50,000 people each year were displaced by cars. In heavily populated developing countries such as China, Egypt and Bangladesh there simply isn't room for cars. In cities, where space is even more limited, the problem can be worse. It is estimated that roads take up 25%-35% a cities land.

Politics of the car by Aileen O'Carroll


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