The Edge of the Wood

by John Messeder, Nemophilist & Ecological Storyteller

Tag: trains

Pa taxpayers subsidize King Coal, pull subsidies from new technologies

A coal train appears like a rattlesnake from a mountain near Hometown, PA(This column first posted 12/30/2011 on Rock The Capital)
A report published this month says fossil fuels receive subsidies of about $2.9 billion a year from Pennsylvania taxpayers. It also says most of the assistance has been in exemptions, such as removing sales and use taxes from gasoline to make the fuel seem less expensive.
The result is state coffers take a hit while motor fuel producers maintain their profits. And hospital costs escalate, powered upward in part by kids and elderly with breathing problems – even those who don’t smoke tobacco.
Actually, the only reason tobacco use is noticeable is relatively few of us inhale cigarette smoke – way fewer than spend large portions of their days inhaling secondhand effluent from the clutter of rush hour people haulers, bumper to bumper, 5-10 mph, into and out of our nation’s large towns and cities. Continue reading

Riding the Metro – a lesson in efficient cooling

Commuters wait to board the arriving light rail in the Washington Metro stationI don’t know whether it’s global warming, climate change or as my spouse chooses to believe, the snow thrower we bought last year, when we thought more snowy winters to be in the offing.

I pulled the machine out of the shed in October, when we had a pretty serious snow – for South-Central Pennsylvania. About eight inches of the white stuff blanketed the ground. I cleared the driveway and the extra parking space – and have not used the machine since.

I suggested maybe we spent the money unnecessarily. Wife suggested it was money well spent.

On the other hand, Continue reading …