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Old 01-05-2024, 09:00 PM
 
Location: Tampa, FL
379 posts, read 355,300 times
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We live in a small house, are vegans, carpool to work/work from home, walk whenever possible, have a large vegetable garden, buy local when we can, recycle, and are minimalists. And we don't have kids.

However, we go against the grain. If there were tax incentives for above people would do it more
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Old 01-06-2024, 08:25 AM
 
1,041 posts, read 566,198 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by submart View Post
We live in a small house, are vegans, carpool to work/work from home, walk whenever possible, have a large vegetable garden, buy local when we can, recycle, and are minimalists. And we don't have kids.

However, we go against the grain. If there were tax incentives for above people would do it more
Here they have a new additional tax (luxury tax) when purchasing homes above $3M. Their purpose isn't for green purposes, just that the municipality is deep into deficit and needs to find new revenue streams.

I agree with the tax because only the truly wealthy can afford a home in that range, and it won't be a small house either. There are condo's in that range, but they generally are huge suites that usually take up the whole floor.
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Old 01-08-2024, 06:22 AM
 
Location: The Driftless Area, WI
7,120 posts, read 4,956,084 times
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Many good points being brought up in this discussion.

Mathematicians often analyse functions by seeing what happens to "y" when "x" is pushed to the limit, getting either very big or very small. If we apply this principle here we see that--

If everyone lived in a high rise, then who would grow the food?...That ain't gunna work....
If everyone lived on a homestead, growing their own, then who would make the tools, not to mention, there ain't enough land for everyone to do that. That ain't gunna work.

The obvious conclusion is that there's some happy medium-- The Optimum

The socialists & communists always hate it when I point out that Everyone is Different. We should all be left to find our own comfortable spot in the scheme.

One must think deeper when contemplating things-- living in a small apartment and eating in a local restaurant wastes a lot of food (ever worked in a restaurant?)....Buying fewer consumer products means fewer jobs, causing yet other problems...etc etc etc.

Noah didn't try to save everybody. Verbum sapienti sufficit.
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Old 01-08-2024, 11:47 AM
 
9,716 posts, read 7,543,347 times
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I like that people have choices. We chose an older home (reuse) in the woods (no need for a/c) in a mild climate (no high heating bills) with room for a garden. We don't go out to eat. My husband builds our furniture, some from trees on our property. We like being outside caring for our property, seeing the wildlife in our woods. Everything we need is within a couple of miles and we both love to drive, so yes, we have cars. We take care of them and keep them a long time. We want to have the freedom to go where we want to go, when we want to go to be with our family and friends. I don't think our lifestyle would be as healthy, physically or mentally, if we lived in a more populated urban environment. That's us.
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Old 01-10-2024, 10:45 AM
 
Location: Taos NM
5,314 posts, read 5,039,092 times
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Originally Posted by mhays25 View Post
Apartments are vastly more sustainable. Sharing heating/cooling is one factor. Apartments are marvels of efficiency in material use, energy use, etc., all else being equal. One factor vs. a house is that you can live in less square feet because the fitness room is downstairs, you can use restaurants and hotels instead of having an extra room for everything, etc.

Just as importantly they don't use much land. You can get 200 units into a single acre in an urban format, or a decent percentage of that in a suburban one.

Homesteading sounds interesting but if every residence needs firewood, an outhouse, a water source, etc., things get bad fast. And you might be losing more natural land than even the current system.
A couple international flights or big roadtrips can outdo all the benefits of living in an apartment footprint wise though. Urban people with small footprints are more likely to want to jump out and away from their small residences than people with a homestead they like. Like guido said, there are many paths to living a life that helps benefit the earth or minimize a footprint.

Certain things are more pressing than others. Recycling is a much bigger deal in Switzerland than New Mexico, where we have plenty of landfill land. I think right now our big things to minimize are habitat carving up, micro pollutants, and energy use. In 30 years there will be a different set of most pressing issues as the population starts to plateau or decline and we have new exploitations and fixes.
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Old 01-10-2024, 11:43 AM
 
1,041 posts, read 566,198 times
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Originally Posted by Phil P View Post
A couple international flights or big roadtrips can outdo all the benefits of living in an apartment footprint wise though. Urban people with small footprints are more likely to want to jump out and away from their small residences than people with a homestead they like. Like guido said, there are many paths to living a life that helps benefit the earth or minimize a footprint.

Certain things are more pressing than others. Recycling is a much bigger deal in Switzerland than New Mexico, where we have plenty of landfill land. I think right now our big things to minimize are habitat carving up, micro pollutants, and energy use. In 30 years there will be a different set of most pressing issues as the population starts to plateau or decline and we have new exploitations and fixes.
The point is... apartments are the solution to urban sprawl. The typical plan for urban areas are nice big houses... fully detached with a big back yard etc. Everyone wanted a big house and property. The problem is that this causes massive urban sprawl outwards. You then need a lot more infrastructure, roads, maintenance, etc. So a lot less "green".

As for landfill land... really? We have plenty of land so let's just not worry about it now? Landfills are not the longterm answers to our garbage problems. We need to produce a lot less waste. Simple logic.
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Old 01-10-2024, 01:08 PM
 
8,751 posts, read 6,674,180 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil P View Post
A couple international flights or big roadtrips can outdo all the benefits of living in an apartment footprint wise though. Urban people with small footprints are more likely to want to jump out and away from their small residences than people with a homestead they like.
Where do you get the idea that apartment residents fly more? They're often in amenity-rich areas. In my case I can walk to touristy things, waterfronts, and hundreds of restaurants. If I want to get further out I can easily take transit or bike, to complete wilderness in fact. I'd want to travel more if I was in a house far from anything interesting.

Plane trips are a problem, but in a broad sense (not just emissions) I'd say a trip or two per year isn't anywhere near on the level of cancelling out the effects of where you live.

PS, good post HodgePodge, who I can't rep again yet.
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Old 01-11-2024, 03:31 AM
 
Location: The Driftless Area, WI
7,120 posts, read 4,956,084 times
Reputation: 17447
a couple points:

US annual aviation fuel consumption is on the order of 18 billion gallons
US annual automotive fuel consumption is about 130 billion gallons--> How much difference will flying less make? If you don't fly, you may still travel by car and your "sacrifice" will will be counter productive....and if you stop traveling, jobs will be lost.

Landfills-- Americans will dispose of trash that will fill 1000 sq mi of land (out of 19 million sq mi of US land) to a depth of 100 ft over the next century. Landfills are highly regulated and toxic despoliation of the environment is now essentially eradicated....At the end of its useful life, the landfill will be rehabilitated to a useful life as recreational parks or natural habitat. ....The only "problem" is that densely populated places like the Boston-NY-DC-Philly corridor has no more room for landfills and must ship its trash long distances.

While urban, high rise living itself takes up less land, the farmland removed from natural habitat to feed the densely populated areas persists, and in time of crisis, that urban population won't be able to feed itself.

All solutions require compromises among the conflicting factors. No solution will please everyone to a maximum, only to some optimum.

And before anyone gets too full of themselves for their minor environmental sacrifices, remember that The Amish have been doing an even better job of it for a lot longer....No cookies for us! One year!!
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Old 01-11-2024, 08:13 AM
 
9,716 posts, read 7,543,347 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mhays25 View Post
Where do you get the idea that apartment residents fly more? They're often in amenity-rich areas. In my case I can walk to touristy things, waterfronts, and hundreds of restaurants. If I want to get further out I can easily take transit or bike, to complete wilderness in fact. I'd want to travel more if I was in a house far from anything interesting.

Plane trips are a problem, but in a broad sense (not just emissions) I'd say a trip or two per year isn't anywhere near on the level of cancelling out the effects of where you live.

PS, good post HodgePodge, who I can't rep again yet.
I can only speak for my niece in Manhattan. She and her friends fly every month, all over the world. She said it's because they live in these tiny spaces and do get bored and claustrophobic. It's easy for them to fly out of La Guardia, earn points towards travel, have fun and see the world. They don't have a car expense besides Uber and they make excellent salaries.

Her generation seems to travel much more than older generations like us. They seem to be very interested in new experiences and adventures where we are be more interested in improving our home and being with extended family.
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Old 01-11-2024, 10:28 AM
 
Location: Taos NM
5,314 posts, read 5,039,092 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mhays25 View Post
Where do you get the idea that apartment residents fly more? They're often in amenity-rich areas. In my case I can walk to touristy things, waterfronts, and hundreds of restaurants. If I want to get further out I can easily take transit or bike, to complete wilderness in fact. I'd want to travel more if I was in a house far from anything interesting.

Plane trips are a problem, but in a broad sense (not just emissions) I'd say a trip or two per year isn't anywhere near on the level of cancelling out the effects of where you live.

PS, good post HodgePodge, who I can't rep again yet.
See KaraGs response. My experience as well, the ones who take multiple trips, especially internationally, live in condos or apartments. And part of it is for the reasons mentioned, it gets small if you sleep in your condo every night of the year, ESPECIALLY if you don't have a car. I can vouch for this personally, I felt more urge to travel when I lived near downtown Denver than living in Taos, it was more of a PITA to get anywhere in Denver and explore. Part of the reason people get condos is they travel a lot and they don't want a yard.



a 6000 mile flight round trip basically washes away the driving distances between the median suburban vs urban resident. And transportation is more carbon intensive than residential home use for heating and cooling.

On a broader sense, I'd say this, people have different preferences and there's different paths to good green living. If a person is going to live in a major metro and craves amenities, they should be in a more dense setup, that's where using less really impacts. Half acre lots in Dallas are horrible. If a person lives in a small city, density doesn't matter as much, but they should then be fine not travelling as much. The Amish, as mentioned, are the rural shining stars

Either way works towards reducing footprints, major metros aren't necessarily better or worse than towns. American major metros are much less efficient than global counterparts. For towns, the gap isn't so big. Pressing issues in one area are not real concerns in others. And realistically, it's the top 20% that use exponentially more than the bottom 80% in either setting.

Last edited by Phil P; 01-11-2024 at 10:37 AM..
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