Seattle's Sustainability Cred Suffering

In the progressive city of Seattle, <em>Worldchanging</em>'s Alex Steffen finds the metro area falling behind other American cities with what is becoming an out-dated land use policy.
October 7, 2010, 6am PDT | Nate Berg
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Steffen argues that the region's cities are not as sustainable as they'd like to think.

"The Seattle metro area's growth management is weak, its regional transportation plan is hopelessly out-dated, and the political powers that be are driving forward a number of major new highway projects -- including a waterfront tunnel and new cross-lake bridge -- that are bound to not only soak up scarce transportation dollars but also lock the region into further car dependence. Meanwhile, the State of Washington has fallen to the back of the regional pack in legislating the kind of incentive shifts that are driving forward green development, renewables, district energy, sustainable design and innovative retrofit programs in other states. Perhaps nowhere else on the West Coast are the politics of sunk-cost thinking so powerful, even in supposedly progressive circles."

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Published on Thursday, September 30, 2010 in WorldChanging
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