Seminar 8: Stressors, Uncertainties, and Future Needs

Seminar members: Corey, Devon, Katlyn, Heber, Marco, Alyssa, Branton, Daniel, Kurt, Neilly

Article 1: Richard T. T. Forman, Daniel Sperling, The Future of Roads: No Driving, No Emissions, Nature Reconnected. Volume 2: Issue 5: Page 10-23: Sep 07, 2011

Image

Bear 71: a powerful video that easily got its meaning across to the class concerning transport routes and wildlife passageways
Jam 3. Bear 71 Still. Fisher Innovation. JPG. http://fisherinnovation.com/projects/bear71(Accessed April 17, 2013)

The Development and Use of Roadways Results in:

  • habitat loss
  • interruption of horizontal ecological flows
  • altered wetlands
  • dispersed land use
  • sedimentation
  • roadkill (one of the most significant causes of wildlife mortality, but don’t have as significant an effect on the overall population)
  • air and noise pollution
  • erosion
  • fragmented habitats (divides populations, creating genetic consequences)
  • alters animal movement patterns
  • barrier effect (greatest ecological impactor, perforating roads could help improve this but would lead to higher numbers of road killed animals)

The Netway system serves as a means to recuperate from the negative effects of sprawling freeways, where the automobile routes would be lifted above ground  or take place underground, being powered by solar or wind energy

Article 2: Richard T. T. Forman and Lauren E. Alexander. Road and their Major Ecological Effects. Annu. Rev. Ecol. Syst. 1998. 29:207–31

  • The second article plays along with the first, discussing the effects of roadways on ecological systems.
  • Topics: roadside vegetation, animals and animal movement patterns, vehicles and population growth, water sedimentation, chemicals, streams and ponds and the road-effect zone

Seminar Discussion:

Question 1: What are some of the flaws and restrictions of the Netway?

  • Climate conditions, the technology needed to put such a system into action and the cost of its development. Not to mention that the infrastructure would still, in a way have its place in the environment and fragment certain sectors. In the end, it’s difficult to phase the car out in planning, and even more difficult to keep its resurgence to a minimum since it is such a daily factor to human life. 

Question 2: Do you think that the problems that the problems caused by roadways will ever get so severe that a drastic change such as a netway would not be implemented? Which problems push innovation the most?

  • Yes, it would be difficult to change all the roadways into the said netway. However, it would simply be an action that would take place slowly with time and become more used the more it’s implemented. It is not a process that will happen quickly, things have to be removed and remodelled and the people have to get used to the new transport route. Innovation has to be pushed to be truly implemented.

Question 3: Is there a more realistic and practical solution to the problem?

  • Some options include having the freeways put on levels, as well simply making cities more dense rather than spread out can reduce the dependence on roadways.

Question 4: Putting feasibility aside, what are some other ways to solve our transportation problems?

  • With this question the class got very supported of the notions of jetpacks, hovercrafts, and small solar powered aircraft as a future means of travel. The implementation of Maria Aiolova’s soft cars is a possible consideration as well, designed to reduce the mortality rates developed by the automobile

Question 5: What suggestions do you have reconnecting land to nature?

  • Rather than simply bulldozing the landscape to accomodate the needs of human transport, the landscape should be carefully excavated for the roadway to be properly placed into it. Such is the case for the development of freeways, the first highways ever developed – they served as a means of leisurely passing through natural areas, having seemed like they were always part of the landscape. It is a means of promoting interaction with nature and wildlife rather than making it a hindrance such as animals wandering onto the road. 

Question 6: Do you think the public would be accepting to the newly proposed Netway system?

  • Being a strictly public means of travel, people would not want to give up their individual vehicles. They are simply too convenient and everyone of this time is raised with the automobile being a vital means of transport. Altogether, the netway system is a bit too extreme for transport development. Small steps should first be implemented, being the implementation of solar or electric cars, developing denser cities, and reducing urban sprawl.
Image

Matthews, Taco Iwashima. Figure 3. The Future of Roads: No Driving, No Emissions, Nature Reconnected. JPG. Posted September 2011. http://thesolutionsjournal.anu.edu.au/node/975 (Accessed April 17, 2013)

 

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~ by sbrodick on April 18, 2013.

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