Clark Williams-Derry

Clark Williams-Derry is research director for the Seattle-based Sightline Institute, a nonprofit sustainability think tank working to promote smart solutions for the Pacific Northwest. He was formerly the webmaster for Grist.

Driving reign

Years of public policy on urban design have made very little driving ‘non-essential’

A few weeks ago, President Bush encouraged Americans to conserve fuel by cutting back on non-essential driving. Unlike some, I think it's actually helpful to use the bully pulpit this way. I just don't think it's terribly meaningful: People respond …

Gas: Still cheaper than roads, insurance, and parking

Society still subsidizes the cost of driving

An interesting article from the Washington Post finds that taking Metro -- DC's light rail system -- into downtown may not save suburban commuters all that much money. Even with gas at $3 per gallon, the savings on fuel, plus …

Starving the timber beast

Tight federal budget prevents old-growth timber sales

The Oregonian today reports on an unexpected consequence of a tight federal budget: The U.S. Forest Service doesn't have enough money to prepare timber sales in old-growth forests. From the article: [T]he administration and Congress are starving the U.S. Forest …

It's a gas gas gas tax

Tierney calls for a gas tax — for something other than transportation

I'm a bit late on this one -- but, wouldn't you know it, as soon as The New York Times puts its editorials behind a subscription-only wall, they publish something worth reading: semi-libertarian John Tierney waxing rhapsodic about gas taxes …

SUVs kill the elderly

Really, they do

A sensationalist headline, perhaps, but it's apparently true: An article in the most recent British Medical Journal reports that SUVs pose a special risk to pedestrians, particularly over the age of 60. A few relevant facts: Pedestrians over 60 are …

The English beat

The U.K. is trying a huge toll-road pilot project

Here's something definitely worth watching: The UK is considering a massive pilot project to make drivers pay to use the roads. And not just on a few select roads -- the system would effectively turn every street and highway in …

Smells like pimply teen spirit

I thought this Hummer-branded laptop was absurd. But apparently that was just the tip of the iceberg. See, e.g., Hummer Stuff: the complete catalog for the Hummer lifestyle, and unambigous proof of the impending end-of-days. If you want, you can …

Time for a tax shift

Tax gas more and other stuff less

Not so long ago, it seemed like gas at $2.33 a gallon cost an arm and a leg; now it seems like a bargain. And not surprisingly, high prices at the pump have spawned a backlash against fuel taxes across …

The laptop for the Hummer lifestyle

Whatever that is

I'm not kidding: Some company is marketing a laptop computer that's "cobranded" with GM's Hummer. From the promotional material: Just as tough, reliable, and go anywhere as a HUMMER, this laptop is the perfect addition to your HUMMER lifestyle! Featuring …