Annals of Motordom – 58
An occasional update on items from Motordom – the world of auto dominance
CAR SATURATION AND CHOICE
The rise of the smartphone and new forms of car mobility are forcing change at a
rapid pace. …
Instead of the traditional focus on cars and driving, people are mixing and
matching their transport choices – using what they need when they need it – and
the radical advances in technology are making such “smart mobility” possible. …
Both car ownership and vehicle-kilometres driven in cities in developed countries may be reaching saturation, or even be on the wane, according to a recent report by the Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
People no longer automatically associate mobility with owning a car.
Instead, many of them want access to as many transport options as possible.
On the other hand …
Particulate air pollution, along with obesity, are now the two fastest-growing causes of death in the world, according to a new study published in the Lancet. …
And the cars are going to keep piling up, too. Car ownership continues to skyrocket, as this handy little terrifying chart demonstrates.
As long ago as 1973, philosopher Ivan Illich recognized that speed was an issue at the intersection of technology and justice. In his extended essay “Energy and Equity,” Illich observed presciently, if somewhat obscurely, that the quest for speed in transportation was an unrecognized domain in which technological advance itself led to increasing inequity of distribution of social and economic opportunity:
Unchecked speed is expensive, and progressively fewer can afford it. Each increment in the velocity of a vehicle results in an increase in the cost of propulsion and track construction and—most dramatically—in the space the vehicle devours while it is on the move. Past a certain threshold of energy consumption for the fastest passenger, a world-wide class structure of speed capitalists is created.