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The Third World in U.S. cities, the greenest mile ever built in Chicago, and transplanting a really big tree in Texas.

This historic oak tree is thriving in its new location after a Texas city moved it four months ago.
Photo Credit: City of League City, Texas

More imagery from the war on waste

Lloyd Alter returns this week with more WWII posters, these ones admonishing us to turn down our thermostats and wear long johns. Lamenting that the values expressed in these posters are now considered “un-American,” Alter adds, “Now we fight our wars on credit and nobody has to go without anything. But in difficult times, doing with less makes sense, saves money and reduces our carbon footprints. Still good advice.”

Get with the program, people, and put on a sweater!

Greener industries are growing faster

Despite a lackluster economy and few strong policies to support them, industries with a higher percentage of green workers have grown at a faster rate than others over the last decade, says a new Economic Policy Institute study. According to Stephen Lacey at Think Progress, there is an ongoing push to broaden the definition of green jobs beyond just those in the renewable energy sector; at the same time, he says, “the deeper the ‘greening’ goes in industries, the more jobs are created.”

This may be why a single offshore wind project could create 70,000 jobs, according to an industry group study.

A road will run through it

A massive 100+-year-old tree in League City, Texas, was in the way of a new road. Instead of chopping down the 56-foot giant, residents actually moved it, reports Stephen Messenger at TreeHugger, who adds that it weighed more than 518,000 pounds. The move is “a testament to the power of human ingenuity to conserve, and not merely overrun, the bit of nature we have come to love in our zones of urban expansion,” Messenger writes.

The rust belt looks better in green

A stretch of road on Chicago’s West Side may be the greenest mile in the world, reports Lori Rotenberk at Grist.

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“Improvements range from solar-paneled bus stops to native plants and pavement that sucks up rainwater,” she writes. “Other cities are studying the project as a blueprint for change.”

There are apparently even wind-powered educational kiosks, although we hope visitors will keep them in perspective: building-integrated wind is not usually a good idea.

America’s Third World nations

New York City might as well be Swaziland, and Los Angeles is like the Dominican Republic—at least in terms of income inequality, which “has reached levels not seen since the Gilded Age,” writes Richard Florida at The Atlantic Cities.

We like to think of our cities as more sustainable because of walkability, subway systems, and other features. But this is an important reminder that many of these features are not accessible to everyone. And the downsides of living in a city, like air and water pollution, fall disproportionately on the poorest of the poor.  

 

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