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  • ...In the past 37 years since SamTrans was formed, it has substantially expanded its services--increasing paratransit services in response to a federal mandate, partnering in the Caltrain system and supporting the construction of BART to the airport--all without adding any new revenue. In the years since SamTrans' creation, the bus agency has never sought additional local funding support, even as its financial commitments mounted. But it needs help now.

    Mercury News
  • Citing fears that packing their communities with new neighbors will hurt the quality of life — and possibly result in injury, illness or even death — residents protested county plans for affordable housing zoning in unincorporated areas across Marin....Marinwood and Lucas Valley residents balked at plans to rezone Grady Ranch as a site for 30 units per acre, a designation also proposed for sites in Marin City, Strawberry and St. Vincent's-Silveira Ranch lands. Tam Valley residents registered disgust at adding more dwellings to a community in which many agreed traffic is intolerable.

    Marin Independent Journal
  • Kentucky’s 2-year-old ban on texting while driving is nearly impossible to enforce, police and prosecutors say, leading to calls for a stronger law punishing distracted driving....For a police officer, it’s difficult to determine whether a driver is texting illegally or tweeting within the law. And proving that a driver was using a phone in violation of the law can be difficult.

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    The London Air Quality Network at King's College London offers a "nowcast" on its website of pollution levels across the city, updated by the hour using reports from air monitoring stations across the area. The real-time (or almost real-time) visualization is impressively specific, allowing any Londoner to zoom into a view of Ozone, Nitrogen Dioxide and particle pollution levels practically down to the block.

    American Cities
  • They may not be there just yet, but hybrid vehicles of all types and sizes are gunning for mainstream status...The Toyota Prius hybrid has been on the market for more than a decade and is slowly becoming a household name. Meanwhile, the total number of hybrids for sale is expected to grow from 42 to 73 options by the end of next year.

    E&E News/ClimateWire
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    The number of Americans commuting by public transportation rose to the second highest level on record last year, as more people returned to work, according to an annual survey released by the leading U.S. transit association on Monday. The growth in ridership would have been even stronger, if Superstorm Sandy had not stranded people and shut down transit along the East Coast, where public transportation is most concentrated...

  • More women drive than men, but men do more driving. Confusing? A recent study parsed almost 50 years worth of data from the Federal Highway Administration for gender trends in America’s roadway habits.

    Transportation Nation
  • ...Many environmentalists believe that wind and solar power can be scaled to meet the rising demand, especially if coupled with aggressive efforts to cut waste. But a lot of energy analysts have crunched the numbers and concluded that today’s renewables, important as they are, cannot get us even halfway there...Among the new nuclear approaches, fission reactors based on thorium are especially intriguing, offering potentially huge safety advantages.

    New York Times
  • A Dutch airliner is flying from New York to Amsterdam on a fuel mix that includes leftover oil from frying Louisiana's Cajun food. The KLM flights from Kennedy Airport are powered by a combination of 25% recycled cooking oil and 75% jet fuel.

    USA Today
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    ...“We’re probably closer to the end of the automobility era than we are to its beginning,” says Maurie Cohen, an associate professor in the Department of Chemistry and Environmental Science at the New Jersey Institute of Technology. “If we’re 100 years into the automobile era, it seems pretty inconceivable that the car as we know it is going to be around for another 100 years.”

    Atlantic Cities