Blog

Earlier this month, Bill Gates made headlines around the world by drinking a glass of water. Five minutes beforehand, it had been human sewage.

Boston Globe investigation last week revealed two important reasons behind the city’s legendary parking woes.

The first, and the main subject of the article, is the city’s failure to manage demand for parking. There is, the Globe revealed, no limit on, nor any fee for, the number of permits a resident can get for on-street parking. One man reportedly “has residential parking permits for 10 cars, including two Ferraris, a Mercedes, and a Porsche” – a surprisingly valuable stable of vehicles to risk on the famously narrow streets of Boston.

More surprising to me, though, was this quote: “‘It's frustrating when you come home from work and have to drive . . . for an hour to find a space,’ said Ryan Kenny, who chairs the North End Waterfront Neighborhood Council’s parking committee.”

Oil and gas industry spokespeople routinely claim that the risks of fracking can be minimized by best practices and appropriate state regulation. Not only is this false – fracking is harmful to the environment even when drillers follow all the rules – but drillers also regularly violate essential environmental and public health protections. A look at recent data from Pennsylvania, where key industry players have pledged to clean up their act, illustrates the frequency with which companies still break the rules.

We welcomed the new year with a series of blog posts covering a number of our issue areas.  Policy analysts reviewed developments and opportunities as the 114th Congress begins its work, and as new governors and state legislators take office.

To conflate today’s mild and tenuous suburban growth advantage over cities with yesterday’s rampant suburban sprawl is to lead people to believe that the post-recession future of development is going to look very much like the last decades of the 20th century.

Fracking has been hailed as a potential solution to America’s dependence on energy imports by freeing up vast domestic reserves of oil and gas. But as with any non-renewable energy, obtaining and using fossil fuels from fracking imposes major costs, the full extent of which aren’t yet clear.

Government transparency debates often focus on the availability and accessibility of information pertaining to government spending. But what about transparency in the very ideas and information that underpin legislative action? The reports of the publicly funded Congressional Research Service (CRS) aren't easily available to members of the public, and that's doing a disservice both to the taxpayers who support the work and the democracy the CRS seeks to inform.

There’s a big danger in attempting to trivialize, define away or ignore the issues surrounding gentrification. In the places where gentrification is happening, those issues are real and they are not going away.

At the end of the year, we all tend to get reflective about the past 365 days. Here are some highlights from Frontier Group's work in 2014.

There are clearly some circumstances in which Americans are willing to support – at great expense and with little political turmoil – universal, fare-free public transportation. The question of why we are willing to do so for school public transportation, and for virtually no other purpose, is one worth talking about.

Chances are that demand management can deliver improvements more cheaply, more quickly, with greater benefits to society, and with much lower risk to taxpayers and the public than laying more asphalt.

When it comes to U.S. action on global warming, the glass is both half-empty and half-full.

The world’s largest tunneling machine, stuck 60 feet under downtown Seattle since December 2013, is causing even more headaches these days. Bertha – that’s the machine’s name – is teaching a hard lesson about sunk costs – and how trying to dig a project out of a hole can make matters much, much worse.

When the Clean Water Act is applied to American waterways, good things can happen. Our recent report, Waterways Restored: The Clean Water Act's Impact on 15 American Rivers, Lakes and Bays, highlights waterways where the Clean Water Act's protections and improvement provisions have had positive effects. Polluted waterways have been cleaned up, pristine waterways have been preserved, and threatened waterways have been protected. All waterways deserve these opportunities.

In this blog series, we'll showcase individual case studies from the report. The next installment looks at a Maine river that helped inspire the Clean Water Act.

We are at a critical moment for solar power. It is already on the rise, growing at an exponential rate.  And with the benefit of smart public policies, it could get very big, very fast. The International Energy Agency predicts solar energy will be the largest source of energy in the world by 2050. Will the rapid growth in solar energy continue? That depends, in part, on whether policymakers can resist a determined push by fossil fuel interests and utilities to derail the emerging solar energy economy.

When the Clean Water Act is applied to American waterways, good things can happen. Our recent report, Waterways Restored: The Clean Water Act's Impact on 15 American Rivers, Lakes and Bays, highlights waterways where the Clean Water Act's protections and improvement provisions have had positive effects. Polluted waterways have been cleaned up, pristine waterways have been preserved, and threatened waterways have been protected. All waterways deserve these opportunities.

In this blog series, we'll showcase individual case studies from the report. The next installment looks at agricultural pollution in Illinois.

America’s water resources are precious, and in grave danger. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says 40 percent of American waterways that have been assessed are too polluted to support intended uses such as fishing or swimming. Pollution threats come from factory farms, industrial facilities and a variety of other sources. Meanwhile, inefficient use of water, along with recent drought, has left less water available for Americans to use and enjoy.

When the Clean Water Act is applied to American waterways, good things can happen. Our recent report, Waterways Restored: The Clean Water Act's Impact on 15 American Rivers, Lakes and Bays, highlights waterways where the Clean Water Act's protections and improvement provisions have had positive effects. Polluted waterways have been cleaned up, pristine waterways have been preserved, and threatened waterways have been protected. All waterways deserve these opportunities.

In this blog series, we'll showcase individual case studies from the report. The next installment looks at stormwater runoff management in Connecticut.

As global temperatures rise, our power plants continue to release millions of tons of carbon dioxide every year. If the world is to avoid the worst impacts of global warming, America must take the lead. Dramatically expanding wind power is a great place to start.

The way we produce and consume food is bad for the environment and bad for us. Deforestation, water contamination, diet-based disease and food safety scares aren’t minor glitches in an otherwise well designed system. Rather, they are inevitable outgrowths of a system dependent on chemical fertilizer, expanding croplands, massive subsidies and weak oversight.

Pages

Subscribe to Blog