Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Something's Got to Give: Hydrocarbon Risks Abound, and Bixi on the Brink of Bankruptcy

If anybody thought there was a crisis underlying how we live now, the new these days should convince them.

In addition to increasing concern about the state of our highway infrastructure, pipelines and trains transporting petroleum products, the one truly innovative North American  response to problems of transportation in cities, Montreal's Bixi, is asked for protection from bankruptcy.

The problems are real and complicated, and partly due to the fact that the bicycle rental system was set up as a private, supposedly profit-making firm, when it should have been integrated in the public transportation system from the beginning.  And that is what should be done, a number of people are saying including Richard Bergeron, leader of the Projet Montreal opposition on Montreal's city council and François Cardinal, editorial writer for La Presse.

The basic problem is that we live too spread out and rely too much on cars to get around.  It's about time that we understood that, and did something about it.

The economic repercussions of rebulding our transportation system and getting our aging infrastructure up to date would be enormous, and much more healthy that putting public money into petroleum exploration and tar sands exploitation.


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