One active category to date on Good Ideas has been the environment section. There are innovative and important ideas there that everyone concerned about the environment should be familiar with. Here are five that strike me as both surprising and consequential:
Traffic jams are actually good for the environment, mostly because they encourage short commutes and mass transit. Wall Street Journal http://bit.ly/cDS0lE
It’s true: “MPG” ratings don’t say much about environment impact (because big cars use a lot more gas, so a small change has big impact). We really should change how mileage is reported. NYTimes “best of 2008” idea. http://bit.ly/7Mz1wD
What?! Don’t worry about CO2? The rationale for this important idea is that methane has 75% of the impact of CO2 on global warming, but has short lifespan and is easier to contain. WSJ: http://ow.ly/QJuy
The fact that a small number of ships produce as much sulphur pollution as all of the cars in the world is shocking (and a bit troubling). Ships burn dirty fuel. Shouldn’t this change? Daily Mail http://bit.ly/cSoq7I
Bill Gates makes a very powerful argument: short-term interventions to help the environment (the current target is 30% reduction of emissions by 2025) are possible, but not very meaningful. We need 80% reductions by 2050, which requires a completely different approach. http://bit.ly/85pVOp
Feel free to vote or comment on any of these ideas on Good Ideas (you can click on the idea titles above to go straight to the ideas).