Real “Green” Talk

Visualize a Futuristic city for a moment….

What do you image? Flying cars–arching pedestrian pathways over freeways–monolithic skyscrapers–an elevator stretching into space–…but how exactly will all of these grand ideas be powered?

Already in our era, scientists predict a deficit of fossil fuels able to power our technologically expanding world, urging Earth’s residents to cast aside their traditional modes of energy for more renewable forms. Hydroelectric power, geothermal, solar–just to name a few. However, for many countries, instituting a plan for more environmentally friendly energy is difficult, especially when these alternatives are much more expensive than oil and gas.

…So is it possible to “go Green” without spending enormous amounts of it?

In an article by the BBC Travel, it is possible for a cities to balance both the monetary cost and logistics of becoming more Earth-friendly. Among the cities that were the most environmentally friendly, most offered easily accessible public transportation as well as bicycle-friendly streets for commuters. In Copenhagen, Denmark, more than 50% of commuters bike to work, significantly reducing the amount of CO2 emissions. Similarly, citizens of Curitiba, Brazil heavily use public transportation to get around the city; as a result, the city is planning to implement a new subway system. One way in which San Francisco made travel more accessible without a car by allowing bicyclists to travel for free on busses.

So Real Talk: can Boston, Massachusetts eventually earn its place on this list of “Green” city?

Well, as it stands at this moment, with the MBTA nearly paralyzed and slight more decrepit than it was three weeks ago (in case you didn’t know, Boston got nearly 8 feet of snow in a span of 3 weeks), and the awful traffic going in and out of Boston, a better system of public transit would definitely help the city twofold. If the city of Boston invested money into the public transportation system, it would make the morning and evening commutes less stressful for people, but also it would encourage more people to use public transit, rather than driving into work. Furthermore, with the subway system improved, there could arguably be less cars on the roads, which would make biking for commuters less dangerous. If the city of Boston made biking safer, more people would be encouraged to make a more environmentally friendly decision when coming into the city.

Already Boston has made significant leaps in making the city more accessible for bikers and pedestrians, like with the creation of the Esplanade along the Charles River: a biker and pedestrian-friendly park that connects to greater Boston with overpasses spanning the Mass Pike that surrounds the city.

Hopefully, one day, Boston can be one of many the list of the most environmentally friendly cities in the world–the true nature of the Future.

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