Monday, March 13, 2006

Councillors calls for rail, not roads - energy banker agrees

Matt Simmons gives the best advice
money can buy at the 2006 Energywise
forum held at Nelson.
He should not be ignored.

In December of last year Cr Helen Ritchie
and I called for fast trains as the answer to
the Capital's northern traffic problems, not
Transmission Gully or an upgraded coastal
highway to Wellington. Clearly Peak Oil was
very much in the minds of myself and
Councillor Ritchie and many of my friends at
Running On Empty.

As you know, last week (Thursday 9 March)
I attended an Energywise forum in Nelson
on behalf of Wellington City Council.
Energy investment banker Matt Simmons
was a key note speaker at that forum.
It was attended by a group of local government
official and elected representatives.

After telling us that Peak Oil is the most
serious issue we face in the 21st century,
Matt Simmons warned that denial of this
most pressing problem would lead
to the death of our culture and way of life.
Mr Simmons went on to tell us how we can
solve Peak Oil. Peak Oil, in case you hadn't
realised, is when supply peaks and then
cannot keep up with demand. That in
turn pushes up the price. Even worse the
supply of oil continues to fall, leading to an oil
Oil is expected reach $200 US a barrel,
and the rest I can leave to your imagination.

The solution argues Matt Simmons is to; -
-Reduce transportation intensity of oil
-Shipment of goods by truck becomes train to boat
-Liberation of employees to work close to home
-End nine to five check in
-Begin era of pay by productivity
-Grow food locally:end era of ornamental food.
-Reverse globalization: make things at home


Blogger Peter Sharpe said...

We used to have a pretty good system for transporting large quantities of freight from one end of the country to the other, even reliable movement of goods from places like wellington, to other places such as Gisborne & even Dargaville.
It was energy efficient, reasonably fast and involved little or no damage to roads, congestion, motor vehicle accidents and had a comparitively tiny environmental impact.

I refer of course, to those wonderful pre-Prebble days of RAIL!!

We had pretty good employment and training opportunities for tradesmen and apprentices too.

Why not re-invigorate rail?
If the public could, for once, take a step-back and accept a slightly less selfish approach to business and consumers (a day's delay, at most to deliver their precious goods)be a little less self-centred, we just might be able to restore what was once a damn-good system.
The benefits to the environment and economy would follow.

In the UK, there has, for many years existed dis-incentives to take private vehicles into central business areas. These include tolls, ridiculously high parking fees and fewer places to park.

New Zealanders appear to believe we have a God-given right to pilot our tin-boxes wherever and whenever we please, to the complete disregard of others or our future.

Want to clean the urban air?

The 1st thing to do is to completely BAN the import of used diesel vehicles.
Only those with commercial registration may own a diesel vehicle.
That will severely reduce the black soot-laden clouds issuing from those body-part extensions we see on the Motorway & around town every day - usually piloted by one person, believing size is everything & as such achieving some sort of motoring deity status.

11:15 PM  

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