No more oil & worsening climate mean a new, more durable paradigm is critically needed. Why not start with a global view, & build systems that will endure for at least the next 2000 years - difficult in today's fast moving technologies! The framework of national and global Linear Cities = solutions!
1. Why ever should combine harvesters perturb in the slightest the average city planner? Because, in the near future, we won‘t have any, nor the wheat, nor the bread that enables only 4% of our population to provide food for ourselves, and for the world! The prime and primal issue of our times is the near future, within the next 60 years, when there will certainly be little petroleum, and all that is left must be preserved for the production of more durable goods, such as fertilizers, pesticides, pharmaceuticals, and plastics.
In such conditions, we will need to have already built a global infrastructure that gets all of its energy from nuclear and renewable sources, while providing access to food, energy and transportation. Rail and maglev trains will be preferred, as they use only 1/3 of the energy/passenger mile that cars and aircraft use, and can be powered by renewable sources! The sooner that we can get a novel rail based transportation network built, the more petroleum we will have for generations that will exist 2,000 and 4,000 years from now! Please bear in mind that the last 2000 years can be reduced to only 20 times the 5 generations that we have met in our own families (20 x 20 years/generation x 5 generations = 2000!).
2. The specific challenges that we must all address are A) the production of food without petroleum - there were approximately 100 million Americans in 1915 and 21.5 million horses (=5:1) to help us to produce food. Now we are 304 million Americans with only 6.9 million horses (=44:1), few of which have ever seen a plow let alone pulled one! How will we produce food without their help, no petroleum and when much of the best farmland has been paved over? B) Where do we get energy from when more than 40% of our total energy demands and more than 99% of the fuel we use in our cars, trucks and farm equipment that is currently provided by oil is gone? C) Can we do anything to slow down and reverse the global climate change that we have been so adept at creating? Can we create the world's first 100% sustainable infrastructure, knowing that everything that we make, use and do within the next 50 years must be 100% sustainable, including stabilizing the world's climates, if we want to maintain the world's populations at their current levels? My project is one of the first to comprehensively address and design for all of these globally life threatening issues using currently available technologies!
3. Before the age of the automobile in 1900, 60.4% of the American population was classified as rural, and was reasonably able to walk into fields to cultivate their own food. Now, only 4% of rural residents make their living farming, the last time most Americans lived on farms was in 1880 and the last time the majority lived in rural communities was in 1920. We will have an enormous challenge to feed, clothe, employ and transport Americans when there is no more oil! We must use the most energy efficient transportation, trains, the only feasible long-term energy sources, renewables of all kinds and nuclear, and the close proximity of all residents of new buildings to food production areas, which is only possible using linear-form cities!