How Sprawl Created the Gulf Oil Spill

This commentary from <em>Urban Omnibus</em> looks at how the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is a problem with roots in unsustainable land use.
May 15, 2010, 11am PDT | Nate Berg
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Vishaan Chakrabarti argues that low-density sprawl that encourages a high reliance on oil has created this tragedy, and that we must rethink how we live.

"Do we, for instance, have the introspection to understand that drilling for oil, mining for coal, and supporting the oppression of petroleum regimes should all go the way of the Dodo? Do we understand that extraction is tantamount to extinction?

Conversely, do we have the introspection to understand that when a liberal juggernaut like the Kennedy family fights a wind farm in their own view shed, it's an invitation for Sarah Palin to invoke us to "drill, baby, drill?"

...As goes our land use, so goes our economy. As our bodies grow horizontally with our cities, we spend more money per capita on healthcare then any nation on earth. And as we feed our cravings by pouring money into roads instead of rails, care instead of prevention, and oil wars instead of renewable resources, we finally arrive at the gaping sprawl of our deficit."

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Published on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 in Urban Omnibus
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