By Greg Lindsay, Fast Company, May 21, 2010

Peter Calthorpe

Peter Calthorpe

...As the world continues to urbanize — from 50% today toward 80% or 90% by 2050 — “the concerns of the world begin to look like the concerns of the U.S.” In the United States, he said, transportation is a third of the [Ghg emissions] problem; in California, it’s half.

“A lot of people still question: does urbanism change our behavior?” Calthorpe asked. “Luckily, we’ve been at this long enough that we have a lab,” Portland, Oregon. Following the inception of the city’s light rail line and denser development around it, vehicle miles traveled fell 11% from 1996 to 2002, and have continued their downward trajectory. “If we cannot prove these benefits, we cannot prove ourselves in the realm of politics,” he said.

Read more about why Urbanism needs to reach the forefront of debate about how to solve climate change. Move over, Al Gore. This urban designer has ideas about land use that should actually make our lives more convenient.