U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Urban Planning
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Closed Thread Start New Thread
 
Old 02-14-2013, 12:00 AM
 
Location: Canada
4,699 posts, read 8,489,713 times
Reputation: 4888

Advertisements

Quote:
Originally Posted by Malloric View Post
I agree with Garlic.

1) No.
2) Such as? Canada (which consumes more oil per capita than we do) is doing fine as well. Germany is doing well, but Italy and Portugal who consume less are certainly not. Spain isn't doing so hot.
Canada's doing fine because rising oil prices help our economy, since we're the ones selling you the oil. That, and a real estate bubble. The areas without oil or balooning real estate are suffering.

That said, the reason the US has a negative trade balance is much more complicated than merely oil imports. It's a factor, but the reasons are much more complicated than that relatively minor part of the picture.

 
Old 02-14-2013, 02:26 AM
 
3,463 posts, read 4,540,822 times
Reputation: 7127
Our generation will be known to later ones as the ones that bought ATV's, Boats, 3500 sq ft houses etc and promoted irresponsible land use and infrastructure -- creating a severe hardship on them-- because, we wanted to.
Huge SUV's and irresponsible, self-indulgent lifestyle choices are our right. We got ours, you guys are on yer own
 
Old 02-14-2013, 07:40 AM
 
Location: Bothell, Washington
2,701 posts, read 4,670,319 times
Reputation: 3676
Quote:
Originally Posted by apm193 View Post
Are oil prices really increasing though? I know they went up a lot in 2008 but since then they have been holding steady between $80-$110 a barrel. And while gas prices have been stagnant, fuel efficiency has been increasing. So no i'm not in the least bit worried. If fuel prices were to go up to say $200 a barrel, manufacturers would just make more efficient, and alternative fuel vehicles. I don't see cars disappearing unless a new better form of transportation comes along.
Excellent point! Yes, if the cost of fuel went through the roof there is too much intelligence, too much on the line in those auto makers to just let that destroy the auto industry, they would come up with a solution, with cars that get much better fuel economy. As a whole, people are not going to be turned away from their cars, that just isn't going to happen- that quoted poster was absolutely correct that the majority of the population does not want to be dependent on public transportation, that is too limiting. There are far too many places it does not go for us to give up our cars. On the weekend you want to go up to some remote areas in the mountains for hikes or photography? Hmm, sorry, city busses or trains don't go up there. Want to go to some remote beach town on the weekend to play on the beach, maybe watch the sunset? Likely not going to get a bus or train that goes there. Need to hit Target, Babies R Us, and Best Buy quickly on the way home from work before going home, changing, and heading out to your kid's soccer practice across town? No problem in a car, but if depending on public transportation, that would be an absolute mess.

And this is not just an American thing- sure people in China rely on public transportation but it's not because they are smarter and think it's a better option, it's because they've been too poor of a nation to afford private cars like we do, and since their cities are so incredibly crowded they were able to put together transportation systems that get people where they need to go. But now as the country rises up economically, more and more people there- even with good public transportation available- are buying cars. Anyone there who can afford them is now getting them, because they see this as a far superior way to get around. My wife's family lives there and we go on occasion to visit, and we see it- almost everyone she knows there had never had cars before the last few years, now they literally ALL have cars. Even they felt a bit limited before, in that sure the bus would get them to work or to their favorite shopping centers, but if they wanted to go to a scenic spot 50km outside of the city, wanted to go to a lookout at sunset that overlooks the city, or even simply wanted to bring a relative to the airport with several large, heavy suitcases the bus was either not a convenient option or was not an option at all. So just like us, they find the car to be the best option.

So cars aren't going anywhere- if and when fuel gets too expensive, the manufacturers will either find ways to get much better fuel economy or will kick the push into overdrive to develop alternative fuel vehicles or some sort of other hybrids. One way or another private vehicles are the preferred choice at least part of the time for people all over the world- it's not just a luxury item that can be done away with. And as others have said, this is not in the least bit the cause of our economic troubles lately.
 
Old 02-14-2013, 08:14 AM
 
Location: IL
2,992 posts, read 4,419,102 times
Reputation: 3085
Quote:
Originally Posted by thunderkat59 View Post
Our generation will be known to later ones as the ones that bought ATV's, Boats, 3500 sq ft houses etc and promoted irresponsible land use and infrastructure -- creating a severe hardship on them-- because, we wanted to.
Huge SUV's and irresponsible, self-indulgent lifestyle choices are our right. We got ours, you guys are on yer own
hmmm? Previous generations didn't do this or strive to do it? Or worse? Converting mangroves to land, rivers burning from pollution, irresponsible building leading to thousands of deaths, creating an environment for disease to wipe out thousands of people. Henry Ford appears to be your devil.
 
Old 02-14-2013, 09:36 AM
 
Location: Hong Kong
1,329 posts, read 872,742 times
Reputation: 217
Quote:
Originally Posted by jm31828 View Post
Excellent point! Yes, if the cost of fuel went through the roof there is too much intelligence, too much on the line in those auto makers to just let that destroy the auto industry, they would come up with a solution, with cars that get much better fuel economy. As a whole, people are not going to be turned away from their cars, that just isn't going to happen- that quoted poster was absolutely correct that the majority of the population does not want to be dependent on public transportation, that is too limiting. There are far too many places it does not go for us to give up our cars.
I disagree.
Many Americans are going to be FORCED to give up their cars.
Not by government edict, but by simple economics, when oil prices rise and rise.

These figures are a few years out of date, but the real figures are probably still close to this:

Average Per Capita Oil Usage
======
U.S.A.-- 27 Barrels
Europe- 9 Barrels
China-- 3 Barrels
======

Now, which country is going to lose most when Oil prices rise ?

What's the alternative?
Move away from the suburban living arrangement : This is both necessary and inevitable IMHO.
And it has begun already. More and more people, especially young people, are looking to move to walkable neighborhoods, where they are less dependent on cars. They are doing this for "quality of life" reasons, and also to save money. Many of these folks are concerned about future oil price rises.
 
Old 02-14-2013, 09:44 AM
 
Location: Hong Kong
1,329 posts, read 872,742 times
Reputation: 217
Quote:
Originally Posted by BIMBAM View Post
...the reason the US has a negative trade balance is much more complicated than merely oil imports. It's a factor, but the reasons are much more complicated than that relatively minor part of the picture.
When I started this thread, I planned to talk about more than Oil Dependency.

As I see it, there are four main cash drains, that are funneling wealth away from Middle Class Americans:

1. Oil depency: ie the Suburban living arrangement, and 9 million bpd of oil imports
2. Military spending: the US spends twice as much per capita on "defense" as it allies
3. The US heathcare system, which is geared towards using expensive pharmaceuticals
4. The predatory financial system, which drains wealth year-to-year and requires occasional bailouts

If all four of these were full addressed and modified to drain little wealth, then the US would soon be back on the road to prosperity.

The related problems are not addressed in the mainstream press or by politicians, because the press and politicians are controlled by the same elites as are benefiting from the four inefficient systems. The predators do not want their prey to see how they are being drained, so they can work their way to freedom.
 
Old 02-14-2013, 09:53 AM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

Over $104,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum and additional contests are planned
 
Location: Long Island / NYC
45,988 posts, read 41,959,650 times
Reputation: 14805
This is the urban planning forum not a general political issues thread, if the thread leaves the forum topic it will be closed.
 
Old 02-14-2013, 10:29 AM
 
Location: IL
2,992 posts, read 4,419,102 times
Reputation: 3085
Quote:
Originally Posted by Geologic View Post
I disagree.
Many Americans are going to be FORCED to give up their cars.
Not by government edict, but by simple economics, when oil prices rise and rise.

These figures are a few years out of date, but the real figures are probably still close to this:

Average Per Capita Oil Usage
======
U.S.A.-- 27 Barrels
Europe- 9 Barrels
China-- 3 Barrels
======

Now, which country is going to lose most when Oil prices rise ?

What's the alternative?
Move away from the suburban living arrangement : This is both necessary and inevitable IMHO.
And it has begun already. More and more people, especially young people, are looking to move to walkable neighborhoods, where they are less dependent on cars. They are doing this for "quality of life" reasons, and also to save money. Many of these folks are concerned about future oil price rises.
I think the change is less dramatic than you say. Suburbs may become denser, some far flung burbs may wither (as cities have done forever), we may spend more on public transport, but I see burbs surviving. I believe burbs will adjust to changes people want, some will become denser, some will fade away over time. Suburban living has many advantages that people want, I don't see that changing.
 
Old 02-14-2013, 12:54 PM
 
Location: Bothell, Washington
2,701 posts, read 4,670,319 times
Reputation: 3676
Quote:
Originally Posted by almost3am View Post
I think the change is less dramatic than you say. Suburbs may become denser, some far flung burbs may wither (as cities have done forever), we may spend more on public transport, but I see burbs surviving. I believe burbs will adjust to changes people want, some will become denser, some will fade away over time. Suburban living has many advantages that people want, I don't see that changing.
I agree, burbs won't go anywhere. Someone else mentioned how much more oil is used in the US than elsewhere. This is a good point, but we need to keep in mind that other places are rising quickly in that usage as they want to live a similar lifestyle to what we do. My example in a previous post of China- even in these big mega cities that they have, when you get farther out to the edges there are suburbs forming that kind of resemble ours, they are far out from the city center and are a bit more sprawl-y compared to what you are used to seeing in the cities over there. But people want that- they want a bit of a quieter place to live, and so they are driving long distances to go to work in the city similar to what we do.

So as I said in another post, this won't end- what will happen if gas prices skyrocket is we will feel some pain for a bit but new solutions for the car will come through- whether it be cars that get double or triple the gas mileage we currently get, or some new alternative energy or a hybrid of both. I mean if we really get into a crunch they could scale back the power in vehicles that are produced, selling cars that have small, very efficient engines such as the 3 cylinder engine that was in the Geo Metro back in the early 90's- that would get maybe 50 or 60 mpg or even better with today's technology. That kind of compromise of power vs. fuel efficiency could be one we'd have to make but it would work, and life will go on in smaller, more efficient vehicles. That is the kind of solution a serious energy price crunch would get us, we wouldn't be forced to go completely without cars- our world is well beyond that for the most part.
 
Old 02-14-2013, 06:50 PM
 
5,076 posts, read 8,507,796 times
Reputation: 4632
Quote:
Originally Posted by jm31828 View Post
I agree, burbs won't go anywhere. Someone else mentioned how much more oil is used in the US than elsewhere. This is a good point, but we need to keep in mind that other places are rising quickly in that usage as they want to live a similar lifestyle to what we do. My example in a previous post of China- even in these big mega cities that they have, when you get farther out to the edges there are suburbs forming that kind of resemble ours, they are far out from the city center and are a bit more sprawl-y compared to what you are used to seeing in the cities over there. But people want that- they want a bit of a quieter place to live, and so they are driving long distances to go to work in the city similar to what we do.

This part is not necessarily correct. They don't have to drive long distances if the transportation infrastructure doesn't require it. They may have to drive a short distance to a rail or subway stop in a truly suburban neighborhood, but they don't have to drive the entire trip. This is one of the issues the Seattle area has, but it's only because commuter suburbs like yours (and maybe mine) were built as car dependent. Converting them now is more difficult especially with the way cities like Lynnwood keep sprawling out without much in the way of a center.

Supposedly my neighborhood will have a rail line to downtown in a decade or so. I'm just far enough west of the Holman/15th route that it's not *quite* walkable to the planned stations in bad weather. However with that option why would I bother driving my car all the way downtown?
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Closed Thread

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Urban Planning
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top