On The Other Hand

Originally published January 18, 2010:

I’m only part way through reading David Wolfe’s latest work “21st Century Cities in Canada: The Geography of Innovation” (recently released and available as a free download from the Conference Board of Canada). Yet already I have been struck by the number of countervailing arguments to what we have long accepted as true in the contemporary world of economic development. There’s a lot of “on one hand… on the other hand…” Personally I find this quite refreshing because the report acknowledges that in Canada “one size does not fit all” and those concerned about cities and innovation would be wise to tailor their strategies to fit the particular circumstances of that particular city. Despite the fact that this study is explicitly focused on cities — especially large cities — it does acknowledge that smaller communities also have aspirations and prospects. Read more

Was the Recession Good for the Environment?

Originally published January 16, 2010:

I’m curious… about many things actually (just ask the people who work with me) but today I’m curious about one thing in particular. Has the recession been good for the environment. Clearly the recession has been far from good news for companies that have gone under, for those who’ve lost their jobs and those who are struggling to make mortgage payments. It’s been a nightmare for the global economy and for government treasuries at all levels. But what about the environment? For instance, is it possible that the recession actually did more to help us make progress on climate change than Kyoto and Copenhagen? Before dismissing my question as flippant consider that… Read more

Have We Finally Had Enough?

Originally posted January 16, 2010:

A recent media report suggested that — at least in North America — the number of vehicles on the road actually fell in 2009. In other words, there are fewer vehicles operating today than in 2008.

Analysts suggest that this phenomenon is the result of factors such as high gas prices, the expansion of municipal transit systems (an alternative to driving), and even the use of networking websites among teenagers replacing cars as a way of socializing. Some observers think this is first sign of the end of the “love affair” we’ve all had with our automobiles. Some people are happy about this apparent development; others not so much! For some, the end of the love affair would appear to signal the possibility of reduced environmental impact from the transportation sector. Does fewer cars on the road mean fewer miles driven? Reduced fuel consumption? Reduced emissions? I wonder…. Read more

Updating Our Community

We are currently updating our web community. Please check back in the next week for updates. In the meantime, feel free to contact us by email at info@ncronline.ca or by phone at 613.376.6006