Sun Country Highway in Regina

I rode around in an Electric Vehicle (EV) today in Regina, and saw a (currently) still rare Tesla Model S in the city right now.

Rav 4 EV

Pick up some excellent EV tips, from a Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada perspective here, as James and I tour the city on electricity:

Find out more about charging stations at Sun Country Highway, Best Western, Delta Regina, and Peavy Mart.

Rav 4 EV

Canada’s Car Culture Criticized

Glad to see some Danes standing up for Canada.

A Canadian stands up for the Danes.

The Danes stand up for themselves.

A few points have arisen as a result of this discussion, largely in defence of “car culture.” I’d like to address them if I may:

We love our cars!

That’s great. What is important, though, is having choices, and safe, affordable and convenient choices. Cars should not be the only option. In a sustainable, livable city, a citizen should have a choice to walk, cycle, run, take the bus, ride the train, get a lift with a friend or drive. These choices must be open to everybody old, young, able bodied and disabled. It is possible to have it all, and the option of driving a car should be alongside, rather than at the expense of healthier, quicker and often more affordable options.

Country X is too big for sustainable transport

Density and sprawl are more relevant to the discussion than size. Many people live within 5 to 15 km of where they work, shop and play but infrastructure designed exclusively for private cars makes sustainable and healthy travel options difficult. In regards to inter-city travel, driving for lengthy periods is unsafe and time consuming. Large countries in particular should demand superb transport systems between cities to make travel safer, cheaper and more relaxing.

What about winter?

Agreed. Winter in Scandinavia is pretty dismal, especially for vulnerable groups in society. I’m sure parts of Canada are even worse. Again, it is about providing choices for safe travel, not just cars. Gridlock is gridlock in sun and snow. Car-free bus lanes, trains, cleared bicycle and pedestrian lanes alongside traffic-calmed roads can make winter transport safer and more convenient for everybody. The same is true of choices for the remaining three seasons.

Amid the responses to this discussion I genuinely hope that energies are directed towards those who can actually change policy. Hopefully less gridlock, safe and sustainable choices, green spaces and livable, vibrant, healthy communities are what people want all over the world. Sustainable transport is about giving people safe choices to travel, not banning cars.

Interchange a Highway

Atlanta isn’t known for being a walkable city. Florence, Italy has a better reputation.

This is kind of mind blowing, and should have people thinking about overpasses and cloverleaf highways in a different way. Auto-sprawl has many costs.

Happy Valentine’s Day

Roxie’s song is called “Hey Valentine”. I met her at Access 7 while I was there to appear on TV too, for Regina Car Share Co-op. Our interviews are on Access Talk of the Town today at 2pm and 5pm.

@roxielenton

http://www.facebook.com/roxielentonmusic

(iTunes)

http://cdbaby.com/cd/roxielenton (The song is also available on CD Baby)

Cheers,
Roxie Lenton

Future Proof: Ice Storms

Last year Shane vlogged about ice storms. Let’s not wait until a big storm hits Saskatchewan before we future proof our homes being built today.

You can check out Shane’s website, and buy his book.

If I had $20,000 to spend on a “depreciating liability” (a car), or $20,000 to spend on renewable energy for my home, which would be more useful during an ice storm or other time of emergency? Arguably a car could be useful to remove myself from the place of emergency, but if there’s no enough gas, or electricity to pump the gas, or if the roads are jammed, a warm home would be much more useful.

Energy prices are only going to go up, so investing in energy systems today is an excellent choice. A company local to Regina that could help is Sound Solar, but there are others with good reputations also.