Posted by: loomisisc | December 10, 2009

Caldwell Backs Green Rail Project

Light tradewinds often reduce air quality over Honolulu.

In today’s news, City Managing Director  Kirk Caldwell defended the sustainable goals of the Honolulu rail project against competing mayoral candidate, Panos Prevedouros and a recent report funded by the Small Business Hawaii Education Foundation. The report announced that the rail project “will either slightly decrease greenhouse gas emissions or will, more likely, increase air pollution,” according to the Honolulu Advertiser’s coverage.

“It’s a little bit like hearing that the Grinch is analyzing Christmas,” said Caldwell in the Star Bulletin’s report. “This, I believe, is a last-minute effort to try to derail rail. They basically are saying that taking 30,000 cars off the road is somehow bad for the environment. It doesn’t make sense.”

Coincidentally, the report’s findings came about during the same week that international community is meeting in Copenhagen to discuss the future global impacts of carbon emissions. On issues such as climate change, the global is local.  To provide further analysis of the emissions discussion, Hawaii News Now’s Howard Dicus and Say Yes to Rail blogger Doug Carlson have both updated their pages with commentary.

Think tank Minnesota 2020 recently produced a similar report on how rail transit affects CO2 emissions, yet came to a different conclusion than Small Business Hawaii study. Click image to read it.

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