Saturday, December 28, 2013

#Carfree in Capetown

Carfree: "I can tell you this makes me pretty happy with my new lifestyle. My daily experience over these carfree months have been very positive, and I feel so far that the slight inconveniences can't compete with the wind in my (sometimes slightly damp) hair."

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Friday, December 27, 2013

#Autosprawl, product the U.S. has consequences of #climate, #war, and #peakoil in Africa

South Sudanese rebels seize oil wells as mediators meet president - The Irish Times - Fri, Dec 27, 2013: "Rebels in South Sudan have seized some oil wells and may damage them, the petroleum ministry said, as African leaders met President Salva Kiir to try to mediate an end to nearly two weeks of fighting in the world’s newest state."

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Sunday, October 27, 2013

Nigeria, with poor infrastructure, nevertheless tries to force people to buy new cars

‘Automobile Production Possible Without Banning Tokunbo Vehicles’, Articles | THISDAY LIVE: "The association stressed that the plan is ill times because of low purchasing power of the citizenry to acquire brand new imported cars; bad and poor road network, as well as lack of conducive and efficient mass transit system to encourage citizens to leave their cars and use public transport systems; poor multimodal and inter-modality with rails, inland waters, etcetera for seamless and easy transportation of products and people to reduce emphasis on road transportation and use of private cars; inadequacy in power (electricity) and other essentials amenities to encourage local manufacturers, foreign investments and reduction in the huge capital flight associated with importation of finished products; low commitment by government to create a functional private sector driven auto industry that will be seen to meet government’s target to produce vehicles that will be affordable to the average Nigerian."

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Monday, October 21, 2013

People in Kigali prove they desperately want more #publictransit

Rwanda - "The recent introduction of a new public transport system in Rwanda’s capital city of Kigali has triggered a rush of demand on the busses put on the road by the three licensed transport companies, leaving many users frustrated over long waits and crowding. The new system was launched only two months ago and the vehicles available proved woefully inadequate compared to the number of people now wanting to use public transport and leave their vehicles at home when going to work."

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Saturday, September 21, 2013

New rationale for looting Africa, carbon credits

Ugandan farmer: 'My land gave me everything. Now I'm one of the poorest' | Environment | "An Oxfam spokesman says: "They had schools, health centres, churches, permanent homes, and farms on which they grew crops to feed themselves and surpluses to sell at market. They paid taxes. Theirs were strong and thriving permanent communities.

"Land grabs are going under the radars of existing safeguards intended to protect vulnerable people. The New Forests Company describes itself as ethical and says it follows international standards, yet more than 20,000 people were evicted without meaningful consultation or compensation to make way for their plantations," says Oxfam director Barbara Stocking."

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Friday, September 13, 2013

Gauteng: many #publictransit promises, little action. Solution: free buses.

Will Gauteng's latest transport strategy be any different? - FM: "None was ever implemented. Indeed, previous plans were abandoned during a change of administration, or have simply sat on the shelf.
Will this latest plan be any different?"
Politicians propose grandiose schemes for building public transport. There are always winners and losers. This creates division and allows the biggest opponent, autosprawl profiteers, to divide and conquer. If a city simply makes buses free, that will people more flexibility in where they work or live.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Ghana: Metro Mass Transit/National Drivers Academy to Train 1000 Drivers "The programme is being organised by the MMT in collaboration with the National Drivers Academy (NDA) in compliance with Legislative Instrument (L.I.) 2118 which requires that drivers are given adequate training to ensure safety on the country's roads.

Under the programme, an initiative by Mr Noble Appiah, Managing Director of MMT, a total of 1,000 drivers will be trained in 4 batches in Accra, Takoradi, Kumasi and Tamale."

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Energy waste in Africa is legacy of colonialism

Pambazuka: "Do you think it is fair that the African continent should be held accountable "today" for the bad decisions rich countries such as yours made “yesterday”, and which has led to over-exploitation of nature, animals and human beings by introducing unhealthy and destructive diets as well as excess energy consumption?

Do you consider it acceptable that countries like yours should impose their failed development models on Africa as if they were models of success and the only guaranteed path towards development?

Would you imagine a world in which Africa adopts your ideas of production, consumption, development and progress?

Do you think it right that Africans must accept without question the responsibility of using our resources to support those who were obviously unable to manage theirs?"

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Zimbabwe: 'Invest in Public Transport' ""Zimbabwe must invest in its mass transportation system to improve traffic flow management. Our current system is unsustainable," she said."

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Namibia drought: one in three at risk of malnutrition

Namibia declared a state of emergency in May amid the worst drought in a generation. Above: the parched village of Otutati, near Opuwo. Photograph: Jordi Matas/AP "One in three people in Namibia is at risk of malnutrition, the UN has warned, as the driest country in sub-Saharan Africa endures its worst drought for a generation."

Monday, August 12, 2013

Cape Town not exempt from an urban spring?

Future Cape Town: "But, globally  the balance of power in cities has shifted and continues to move towards the urban citizen. One that is no longer a passive recipient of major infrastructure projects and city planning, but a more educated, informed and active participant in civil society. The democratic deficit that results can escalate alarmingly fast, as the protests at Taksim Square have showed."

Thursday, August 8, 2013

As Nairobi airport burned, emergency vehicles were stuck in traffic

Inferno roars through E. Africa's largest airport - NewsTimes: "Fire trucks and ambulances on the way to the airport "were trying to weave their way through a solid two lanes of cars," said Barry Fisher, whose flight to Ethiopia was canceled."

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Traffic congestion the biggest problem in Egypt

If I were in charge … of Egypt -

  • "Make sure that all trading deliveries in large trucks over a certain size take place between 10pm and 5am to avoid crippling the highways and byways. Then, people could at least get to work. This would motivate people and have a psychologically positive effect, as the visible improvement in traffic and the environment would be immediate. This is not a new idea, but it never seems to get implemented.
  • Raise the price of fuel for all private and business cars. Public transport vehicles for the poor should continue to get fuel at the current price. Focus on public transportation."

Monday, July 29, 2013

Durban, South Africa to spend USD 3 billion on #publictransit

R20bn Durban transport plan - KwaZulu-Natal | IOL News | "Durban - A R20 billion transformation of Durban’s public transport system over the next seven years is expected to connect 600 000 commuters across the city to nine public transport corridors.

The network will intergrate bus, rail and taxi transportation. The aim is to offer reliable and cheap commuter transport.

The city promises it will be safe and secure and will be monitored by a control centre and closed circuit television cameras.

Work has already begun on the first phase of the eThekwini Integrated Rapid Public Transport Network to cost an estimated R10 billion over the next five years.

A further R10 billion will be spent to complete the project by 2020."

Thursday, July 11, 2013

2/3 of Egypt’s oil is gone 20 years after its peak

Does this look like good use of a country's wealth?
2/3 of Egypt’s oil is gone 20 years after its peak: "No matter who is ruling Egypt and for how long, this country faces a crippling energy crunch which contributes to the general dissatisfaction of the public and the accelerating changes we see in this country."

Monday, June 24, 2013

We cannot achieve collective goods acting individually

The Observer - Public goods can’t be based on solo actions: "Given a choice, the average person prefers a free-ride, meaning incurring no cost, in enjoying public goods and services. This is because most public goods have what economists call ‘jointness of supply,’ meaning consumption or use by one member of the public does not diminish the supply of the same good or service to others."
Very good. But all public goods are not the same. The subsidy of roads enables climate change and is a free gift to oil industry. In addition, the more individuals use a road, the worse it is for the whole people. Whereas, the more people use public transit, the more the return on the investment, and the less donation to climate change.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Coal-Burning in the U.S. and Europe Caused a Massive African Drought

Olga Khazan - The Atlantic: "New research from the University of Washington shows that air pollution from the Northern Hemisphere indirectly caused reduced rainfall over Africa's largely arid Sahel region, causing Lake Chad, a major local water source, to dry up, and leading to widespread crop failures."

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Climate change impacting food supply in Ghana

Times Of India: "He said evidence of climate change in Ghana was that the mean annual temperature had increased by one degree celsius since 1960, on an average rate of 0.21 degree Ccelsius per decade.
Adu-Dapaah said the impact of climate change was increasingly becoming severe and that long-term projections indicated crop yields could fall by up to 50 per cent by 2020 and net revenues from crops could drop by as much as 90 per cent by 2100."

Friday, May 10, 2013

Joburg introduces plan to eliminate private autos

30bn for Joburg infrastructure - Sowetan LIVE: "He said the design would diminish the use of private cars.

"Over time, we will eliminate the need for private vehicles as the city progressively moves towards an effective public transport system," he said.

This would not only change traffic patterns but also reduce carbon emissions, resulting in a healthier environment."

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Cars choking Sudan

Sudan Vision Daily - Details: "Khartoum -- Public transportation in Khartoum has been a major concern of the residents despite attempts by the state’s concerned authorities to find a radical solution to the problem. The problem is coupled with constant traffic jams especially during rush hours. Many bus stations have been moved and relocated to ease the traffic; however, the suffering of the residents remains."

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Saturday, April 27, 2013

Farmers in Africa devastated by #climatechange "“As you can see, every single tomato and vegetable in this farm has been submerged in water not forgetting that I spent a fortune to invest in this project in the hope that returns will be great,” Mwangi told Xinhua in his farm located in Kandara, a farming district 70 km northeast of Nairobi"

Monday, April 22, 2013

Nigeria: Money is there for #publictransit, just not vision "It is not because we cannot develop the metro due to paucity of fund as always insinuated by the government, but because we continuously misplace our priority, by placing in the fore what should be last, even if needed. Or, is it not in the same city that we have the National Stadium constructed at a very exorbitant inflated cost? Is it not the same city that hosted the All African Games with a very expansive games village, the CHOGM and not long ago the African First Ladies Summit with a very controversial and expensive African First ladies Peace Mission secretariat now being proposed? We can go on and on. On the other hand Malam el-Rufa'i could have had his short comings, but, the metro, or the on going light rail concept in Abuja development that was earlier abandoned, was not resuscitated until during his tenure. At least, that effort must be commended."

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Thursday, April 18, 2013

IPS – Should South African Taxpayers Subsidise Car-Making Robots? | Inter Press Service

IPS – Should South African Taxpayers Subsidise Car-Making Robots? | Inter Press Service: "South Africa’s automotive manufacturing sector is the country’s flagship industrial support sector, with about two billion dollars having been pumped into it through a series of subsidy schemes. However, as the industry is capital intensive, some commentators are worried that the South African government has been assisting a sector that does not do enough for job creation."

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Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Free public transport is path to end regressive fuel subsidy in Africa "IMF estimates suggest that a $0.25 per litre increase in fuel prices equates to a 5.9% decline in household real incomes - hardly a popular move, whatever the long term economic merits might be."

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Sunday, April 14, 2013

Lagos, Nigeria, allow one hour to find parking

Ikeja: A Business District Without Parking Space: "With a population of 18 million, Lagos has about eight million registered cars on the road. When this is added to the thousands of heavy-duty trucks and trailers that come from all over the country to the city’s seaports and depots, it becomes obvious that the city is choked with vehicles, with little or no space to park."

Friday, April 12, 2013

Ghana: Cars choking Accra " transportation is one of Accra's key challenges with growing numbers of citizens and vehicles placing increasing pressure on the city's road networks. With 90 percent of all transport in Accra by road, traffic jams have a negative effect across many other areas such as business, emergency response, the environment, education and healthcare."

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Kenya : Bribe-taking police officers driving matatus out of the road

Standard Digital News: "Nakuru, Kenya: Public transport operators in Nakuru have raised concerns over constant harassment by traffic police officers demanding bribes.

According to matatu operators, the officers no longer inspect vehicles as required by the law but demand bribes and allow unregistered transporters to operate freely."

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Saturday, March 16, 2013

Abandon cars, use buses

Abandon cars, use buses: "KCCA should set up a directorate of public transport, planning, management and regulation. Since we need personnel to run the public transport sector, universities should be helped to start specific courses on transport and logistics at degree level and work with government in carrying our research.

The Government should also come with capacity building. It can ask for technical assistance from countries like China, where the company bought its buses, and train competent drivers and other personnel who can multi-task.

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U.N.: Over 1 Million Die In Traffic Crashes Each Year – and Many Are in Poor Countries | Transportation Nation

U.N.: Over 1 Million Die In Traffic Crashes Each Year – and Many Are in Poor Countries | Transportation Nation: "The World Health Organization says 1.24 million people die each year as a result of traffic crashes, which are the leading cause of death for people between 15 and 29.

The Global Status Report on Road Safety 2013, released Thursday, also estimates crashes injure between 20 and 50 million people each year."

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Global Warming May Have Fueled Somali Drought - ABC News

Global Warming May Have Fueled Somali Drought - ABC News: ""In the coming decades, unless urgent action is taken to slash greenhouse gas emissions, temperatures in East Africa will continue to rise and rainfall patterns will change. This will create major problems for food production and availability," Gebregziabher said."

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Thursday, March 7, 2013

World Bank finds traffic congestion costs Egypt 4% of GDP. Their solution? Phone Apps.

Looking-for-a-technological-fix - Al-Ahram Weekly: "One recent study by the World Bank estimated that Cairo’s congestion problems were costing the country LE50 billion a year, or four per cent of Egypt’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). The figure includes losses to productivity due to people sitting in traffic instead of working, additional fuel consumed due to prolonged travel times, and the environmental impact of increased vehicle emissions.
...Unfortunately, the capital suffers from an unreliable public-transport system, and there is a lack of data about it such that it can be hard to know the arrival times of buses and their destinations. “There are roughly three billion hours wasted a year as a result of waiting for buses,” Noureddin said."

Tuesday, March 5, 2013 Kenya: Energy and Foods Costs Push Up Inflation to 4 Percent Kenya: Energy and Foods Costs Push Up Inflation to 4 Percent: ""Housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels' index went up by 0.39 per cent between January and February 2013. This increase is attributable to higher costs of house rents, kerosene and other cooking fuels which outweighed observed lower costs of electricity," said KNBS in a statement released yesterday."

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Friday, February 15, 2013

Are our streets made for walking? | Future Cape Town

Are our streets made for walking? | Future Cape Town: "For many people, the concept of ‘Walkability’ simply means how many shops, cafes, schools and other services are within walking distance of a particular location. While this is a really important part of a walkable neighbourhood (people won’t walk if there is nothing to walk to) there is a growing body of evidence that suggests that several other factors improve or reduce the walkability of a street or neighbourhood."

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Saturday, February 9, 2013

Religion card not working so well for control of MENA

Amid Uncertainty, Tunisians Bury Slain Opposition Leader - "Many people said that the size of the crowd, for a politician who even supporters said had a limited following, showed that anger at the Islamists was reaching deeper into Tunisian society. "

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Monday, January 28, 2013

Egyptian people too smart for new U.S. puppet

Protesters occupy Sidi Gaber train station in Alexandria on Monday (Photo: Yasmine Fathy)
Thousands of demonstrators block Alexandria roads, railways - Politics - Egypt - Ahram Online: "Thousands of protesters converging from the Qaed Ibrahim mosque and Victoria Square on the Sidi Gaber district in central Alexandria have blocked off Abu-Qir boulevard with rubbish bins and bonfires.
Other groups of protesters are sitting on two of the main tracks of Sidi Gaber train station and obstructing them using iron rods, wooden sticks and a broken desk."

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Shocking pictures of people risking lives for oil dollars in Niger delta

Illegal oil refineries in the Niger Delta – in pictures | Art and design | "The Nigerian-born Reuters photographer Akintunde Akinleye won a World Press Photo award in 2007. He documents the dangerous practice of illegal oil refining in the Niger Delta, which damages the environment and the health of local people"

Monday, January 14, 2013

US/UK company sells known poison after bribing officials

British company 'selling toxic lead fuel to poor countries' - Telegraph: "Two years ago, the company pleaded guilty in the US and British courts to paying massive kickbacks to Iraqi and Indonesian officials to secure lucrative contracts supplying TEL between 2000 and 2008."

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Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Two Degree #climate target is "certain death" for Africa

The Most Important COP Briefing That No One Ever Heard | Truth, Lies, Racism & Omnicide: "The first fundamental that we have to agree on at 5(4) is the issue of the 1.5 degree Celsius and the 350 ppm. And the centrality of this is because a deal that cannot save God, humanity and nature is not a deal that we should entertain in the first place. Those who articulated a perspective and tried to persuade us that the 2 degrees Celsius is a sound choice have made a trade off between life, humanity, and profit-seeking pursuits. It has no base in science. The very reports that they try to persuade us that they are based on, do not support their case. The IPCC AR4 [4th Assessment Report] says that two degrees Celsius will result in Africa warming up to 3.5[C] and the small islands states equally being threatened by the sea level rise. I will say this and I will say it with absolute conviction. Two degrees Celsius is certain death for Africa, is certain devastation of island states."

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