Sunday, December 2, 2007

Praha hl.n. a okolí 1/2

Praha hl.n. a okolí 2/2

Click here for details on logistics concept...

Praha hl.n., nejen pro nakupující... 1/20

Praha hl.n., nejen pro nakupující... 2/20

Praha hl.n., nejen pro nakupující... 3/20

Praha hl.n., nejen pro nakupující... 4/20

Praha hl.n., nejen pro nakupující... 5/20

Praha hl.n., nejen pro nakupující... 6/20

Praha hl.n., nejen pro nakupující... 7/20

Praha hl.n., nejen pro nakupující... 8/20

Praha hl.n., nejen pro nakupující... 9/20

Praha hl.n., nejen pro nakupující... 10/20

Praha hl.n., nejen pro nakupující... 11/20

Praha hl.n., nejen pro nakupující... 12/20

Praha hl.n., nejen pro nakupující... 13/20

Praha hl.n., nejen pro nakupující... 14/20

Praha hl.n., nejen pro nakupující... 15/20

Praha hl.n., nejen pro nakupující... 16/20

Praha hl.n., nejen pro nakupující... 17/20

Praha hl.n., nejen pro nakupující... 18/20

Praha hl.n., nejen pro nakupující... 19/20

Friday, October 26, 2007

Public Transport: More Self-Harming Adverts and Positive Images in Popular Culture

For this advert, it seems almost certain that a public transport operator rented out the bus to the television production company or advertising agency.

I am also pleased to bring you the poor, car-less public transport rider, the smelly one and the sick one (but also the compassionate fellow passenger).

This one is so low-budget it might have done without permission, and here we have school bus operators getting in on the action.

An interactive ad at a bus stop in London rounds out the negative examples of this collection.

Again, in possibly all these cases, PT operators or city authorities at least gave permission and at worst took money.... on my planet this is called masochism.

To end on a positive note, a musical group from Venezuela are shown having fun with their mobile electronics (this was filmed in the town which has the same type of metro vehicle which can be accessed here) and, off topic but cute, headways can be annoyingly short sometimes...

... this is part two of this series. See part I here, here and one of one my all time-favourites here. See my Flickr page on same theme.

Dogs on Board!

Thanks for joining us... please see updated version of project HERE.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Shell nominated for Worst Greenwash

In the 'Worst EU Lobby Awards', Royal Dutch Shell has been nominated for suggesting that their oil refineries emit flowers, not smoke.

In the wake of increasing public conviction that climate change needs to be addressed, Shell is trying to remodel its image in order to appeal to the environmental consciousness of potential customers. Advertising in newspapers and magazines in April and May 2007, the company showed a refinery emitting flowers from its chimneys with claims that it uses its “waste CO2 to grow flowers and [its] waste sulphur to make concrete”. However, in reality, less than 0.5 percent of Shell’s total CO2 emissions are piped into Dutch greenhouses to grow flowers. Furthermore, most of Shell’s sulphur waste is used for ship fuel and is finally released in the air. Sea ships are one of the biggest sources of sulphur dioxide pollution.

For full info see here.

See UK Guardian story "No bouquets for Shell press ad"


On February 3, 2007, nature lovers smeared oil all over the photographs at the London Natural History Museum's Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibit, which was sponsored by Shell.


The ‘Worst EU Lobbying’ Award is to be given to the lobbyist, company or lobby group that in 2007 has employed the most deceptive, misleading, or otherwise problematic lobbying tactics in their attempts to influence EU decision-making. This year’s event also includes a special ‘Worst EU Greenwash’ Award for the company whose advertising, PR and lobbying lingo is most at odds with the real environmental impacts of their core business activities.

The EU lobby awards are organised by Corporate Europe Observatory, Friends of the Earth Europe, LobbyControl and Spinwatch.


In 2002 Shell Foundation gave EMBARQ funding which totalled USD 7.5 million, for a five-year programme.

In 2006 alone Royal Dutch Shell made a profit of USD 26.311 billion.

The amount of money Shell gave to EMBARQ represents a very tiny little bit of the money they are playing with. And most of the rest - I assume minus some other donations - is about feeding the automobile habit of the world. Personal cars.. killing, maiming, scaring, screaming, terrorizing. Balance that against the projects of EMBARQ in Mexico, China, Turkey and so on... I don't think you can, no matter how great they are.

That's why it is Greenwash, even if it goes beyond adverts and spin.

Now, I don't only blame EMBARQ - but of course I also don't like that Caterpillar - the company that supplies military bulldozers to the Israeli Army used for tearing down Palestinian homes - is their other major sponsor beside Shell. I blame national governments and the people that vote them in for screwing up priorities so much that an oil addiction pusher like Shell or, again, an advertising company like JCDecaux has to come in and try to save everyone. Still, the foundations and organisations we work with do make choices. What is most disheartening is when they say that Company X is helping them right before they stick their collective head in the sand about the rest of it.

Unfortunately, the recent Towards Carfree Cities conference of World Carfree Network - Green Idea Factory is a member - in Istanbul, hosted by the Turkish Traffic Safety Association, also received some support from EMBARQ. I have not yet received any details on this, but I will post it here when I get more info. Their sponsorship was not so high-profile, but it was still a conscious effort of EMBARQ.

Finally, the Royal Green Shower of Shell gets even worse.

More information and related:
Controversies concerning Royal Dutch Shell
Sourcewatch Wiki on Shell
Shell and Ferrari advert
Very long and funny Shell advert about oil extraction
Greenwash of biggest Czech environmental foundation
Laws on adverts in Norway

Transit Pass - Best Weapon Against Climate Change?

The new report released by the American Public Transportation Association makes some interesting comparisons about various ways to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and other greenhouse gases. See press release, fact sheet and full report.

There is a key word or term missing from the report, and I am not sure why. What is it? Here's a hint: Complementary.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Hey bus rider, need a car loan?

Johannesburg, South Africa, September 2002 - The advert is from a bank which provides financing for purchasing a car. For more examples of self-destructive advertising on public transport vehicles and related properties - from Beijing, Bogota, Prague and Tallinn - see my Flickr page.

Photo provided by Lloyd Wright from Viva in Quito, Ecuador.

UITP (International Association of Public Transport) has created a ‘Public’s choice’ Award in advance of their 4th International Marketing Conference in Malaga, Spain in November. View nominees and vote here!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Cyclists, singing and dancing

What's a Girl to Do? by Bat for Lashes...

Dancing and singing ON the train

Trying doing this is in your Tata or Indian-built Škoda! (Read more here).

The song is "Chaiyya Chaiyya" from the movie Dil Se.

Positive Public Transport in Pop

From 1999, by Luscious Jackson. This video was shot in NYC, their hometown. The singer described herself recently as a city person who always used the subway and her bike. Why can't more bus rides be like this?

Nine years later the singer, Jill Cunniff, continues having fun on public transport.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Greenwash in the Czech Republic

This was featured at my stand for World Carfree Day in Prague, 22 September, 2007.

This is the "partners" webpage from Nadace Partnerství (Czech Environmental Partnership Foundation). The various companies are listed... Skanska as a builder of highways, Ceskomorasky Cement as a provider of materials for highways, Toyota etc. doing their nonsense.

More materials from the stand coming soon...

Saturday, October 6, 2007

UK 'exporting emissions' to China

BBC: The UK's increasing dependence on Chinese goods is contributing to a rise in carbon emissions, a report suggests.

The New Economic Foundation (Nef) says such reliance is adding to CO2 levels because China's factories produce more CO2 per item than British ones.

The report also says many similar goods are both imported and exported, adding needlessly to CO2 output in transport.

Full story.

Toronto: World Record Walk + Anti-Car and Out of Balance

In this video, Toronto's poet laureate describes how walking (and smiles) create community, as Toronto participated in a World Record Walk.


It's time for Toronto to give less priority to cars and more to other modes of transport, a senior Toronto official bluntly told the city's works committee yesterday.

"Maybe a balance is no longer appropriate," said John Mende, Toronto's director of transportation management...

... "I think it's time now to tip the scales in favour of the other modes of transportation, and perhaps create an imbalance in favour of those other modes," he said.

Read full story.

Pollution in Paris... from bicycles

"... hundreds of electric billboards have sprung up all over town. These are part of the deal in which the council provides extensive use of advertising space to an urban display company in payment for its provision of the Vélib’ service.

An anti-advertising group yesterday announced a mass outing to attack the billboards on Friday night [28 September]. The Déboulonneurs organisation, which has made a splash with guerrilla-style raids on Métro station posters, said: “This is visual pollution of the city . . . and energy pollution because each billboard consumes as much electricity as the average household.”

from TimesOnline story on Vélib’

Read press release from Collectif des déboulonneurs and summary of action and response (both in French) . Photos of action.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Prague's new parking zones - Residents use loophole to register cars in their childrens' names

The City Hall's plans to introduce parking cards in the city centre as of October 1st has triggered an unexpected side-effect. Prague may soon top the world ladder in the number of young children who own luxury vehicles. People who own two or more cars have found a loophole in the new regulation which says that every citizen of Prague [in central districts one, two, three, five and seven] - including newborns and centenarians - has a right to a parking pass for the price of seven hundred crowns a month [PER YEAR, actually... about USD 35]. The price of a pass jumps steeply for a second or third car to 7 thousand and 14 thousand crowns respectively. News of how to get around the regulation spread like wildfire and in recent weeks the authorities have noted a massive transfer of car ownership to young children. The kids are happy to brag about their new Toyotas* and Volvos but the city hall is not so happy [I am sure some politicians predicted this]. However it seems that there is little it can do legally and it has decided to bide its time and see how things develop. - Radio Praha

Original story

Very related bad news

... don't miss the story at the first link which talks about fake policemen and women being stolen...

GREENWASH ALERT NO: 1 * Toyota is a "partner" of the Czech Environmental Partnership Foundation (Nadace Partnerství/NP), arguably the most important member of the Environmental Partnership for Sustainable Development, a member of the European Greenways Association (EGWA), which is itself a new member of World Carfree Network. A representative of NP is the treasurer of EGWA. Other partners include Škoda Auto, Peugeot and Citroen, plus the investment group Penta, which owns a company that produces weapons sub-systems used by the U.S. Navy in Afghanistan and Iraq. Penta is also considering developing a second international airport in Prague which is likely to target lowfare airlines.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Norway: Cars neither "green" nor "clean"

OSLO (Reuters) - No car can be "green," "clean" or "environmentally friendly," according to some of the world's strictest advertising guidelines set to enter into force in Norway next month.

"Cars cannot do anything good for the environment except less damage than others," Bente Oeverli, a senior official at the office of the state-run Consumer Ombudsman, told Reuters on Thursday.

Full story

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Russian mayor bans excuse making

The mayor of a city in western Russia has issued a list of excuses that he will not tolerate from civil servants.

Alexander Kuzmin, mayor of Megion in western Siberia, said that officials must stop using phrases such as "I don't know" and "it's lunch time".

Mr Kuzmin said city officials should help improve people's lives and solve their problems, not make excuses.

The mayor's press office said the list consists of 27 forbidden phrases, including "there's no money".

What am I supposed to do?
I'm not dealing with this.
We're having lunch.
The working day is over.
Somebody else has the documents.
I think I was off sick at the time.

Mr Kuzmin warned in a statement that "the use of these expressions by city administration officials while speaking to the head of the city will speed their departure."

He said he was taking action as he was tired of civil servants telling him that problems were impossible to solve, rather than offering practical solutions.
From BBC World Service

Friday, August 31, 2007

Two related stories from Spain

People are allowed to kill us, each other and the place they are going to:

"...And, of course, "El Boom" has continued, with all the familiar consequences.

The Med can expect to receive 230 million visitors this year making it the world's most popular tourist destination.

It is predicted that by 2020 the influx will have risen to 350 million.

Already 22,000 sq km of this once beautiful and productive coastline are covered in asphalt and concrete and the urbanisation is bound to continue.
During a recent visit to the Costa Brava to report for Crossing Continents, I re-read a book by Norman Lewis who is, in my opinion, one of the best travel writers of our time.

In the 1950s, Lewis lived and worked as a fisherman in a small Spanish fishing village.

He was on the Costa Brava as the first wave of tourists arrived and in his book "Voices of the Old Sea", he quotes the reaction of a small-town mayor.

'Although we've come to live off these people, we intensively dislike them. Why? Because we resent what they are doing to us. It's a kind of sickness. Now we suffer from tourists. But it will die out in the end. This is only a passing fad, they'll all go and we'll be back where we were before.'..."

- By Julian Pettifer, BBC Radio 4's Crossing Continents

full article


.... but if there is some kind of other threat all of the sudden their safety is paramount:

"...The shark, which is said to measure around 1.5m (5ft), was spotted off the coast near Murcia on Wednesday and on Thursday. Its type is not known.

Several beaches have been closed as a result of the sighting..."

- BBC News , "Spanish beach shut as shark seen"

full article

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

What's that you say? You're endangered? Oh, I couldn't hear you...

Pandawash? WWF Netherlands has made a deal with KLM Royal Dutch Airlines. The deal is about carbon; this illustration is about something else. Read the press release (with translation help) and let me know what you think...

Thursday, August 23, 2007

UK: Fight to save 'set aside' schemes

The UK government has to make a decision very soon on the future of an arcane farming subsidy called set-aside.

Although it sounds of little interest to the non-farming public, conservationists say it has, accidentally, become a powerful environmental tool - and stopping it could be devastating to some of our rarest wildlife.

full article

Related article: EU proposes scrapping fallow land

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Halt all expansion of airports, & ban short-haul flights

"The Plane Stupid! agenda has two other demands: halt all expansion
of airports, and ban short-haul flights."

August 14, 2007
The Independent/UK

We Should All Be At Heathrow Protesting - It is collective pressure on government, not consumer choices, that the world needs now.

by Johann Hari

This week, two thousand people will gather at London’s Heathrow airport with tents and sleeping bags - not to EasyJet to the beach, but to alert their fellow citizens to the Weather of Mass Destruction we are unleashing.

If you need to know why this is necessary, take a look at the world the deniers are so glibly averting their eyes from. The two countries doomed to drown by global warming in my lifetime have already begun to disappear beneath the waves. Almost half of Bangladesh is under water as you read this, following monsoons four times more ferocious than they should be. Ten million people are now homeless in the
region. In the Maldives, a series of massive swell waves stretching to 4.5 metres drowned 68 islands this spring. The residents know the waves are getting bigger every year, and soon they will swallow their homes forever...

full article

Saturday, August 11, 2007

TrashTrain Praha 1/12

This is a concept for an all-electric & human-powered logistics system for Prague... it's called TrashTrain BUT it's much more than that...

... cities all over Europe (well, Western Europe, so far) restrict (not just) delivery vehicles based on their emissions. See plan for London ... Milano will be implementing something similar starting in 2008.

Of course it is certainly not just about emissions! The most recent - and exciting - development in what I call "street de-chaosification" AND emissions-free logistics is in Amsterdam, with City Cargo . See longer video here . In Switzerland electric vehicles have been used for years in the mountains, and there are also cargo trams in Zurich.

For more innovative concepts in urban logistics check out Bestufs .

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TrashTrain Praha 2/12

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TrashTrain Praha 3/12

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TrashTrain Praha 4/12

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TrashTrain Praha 5/12

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TrashTrain Praha 6/12

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TrashTrain Praha 7/12

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TrashTrain Praha 8/12

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TrashTrain Praha 9/12

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TrashTrain Praha 10/12

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TrashTrain Praha 11/12

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TrashTrain Praha 12/12

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Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Energy Use Rant

"Lance Armstrong pedalling a bike-driven generator can
produce about 350 watts and he can probably keep this
up for about 3 hours. That is, roughly, 1 kilowatt-hour.

If Lance drives to the gym in a Prius and he travels
10 miles round trip, he uses an average of about 10 HP
for a period of 10 minutes (assuming an unlikely average
speed of 60 MPH). At 746 watts/HP, this is 74,600 watt-min:

10 min * 10 HP * 746 watts

74,600 watt-min is 1243 watt-hours or 1.243 kWh

So, in ten minutes of driving, Lance uses more energy than
he can produce in 3 hours of pedalling.

Now, if it's YOU on the treadmill, how many watts continuous
can you produced for three hours?

If you power your car by pedalling a generator to charge
its batteries, you're going to have to pedal for, say,
one working shift in order to drive 10 miles back and
forth to work. Or, you could ride your bike for, say,
40 minutes each way.

We MUST get our heads around the notion of just how much
energy we are consuming. It's truly incredible. Think in
terms of reducing your energy consumption 10-fold in
your lifetime. Even THAT is probably not sustainable.

The fix we're in is so much worse than people think it is,
simply because they think it's quite normal to put 10 gallons
of gasoline in the car once or twice a week. The energy
content of that gasoline is just incredible; only since
the start of the industrial era have people been able to
consume energy at this rate. This has only been possible
because we have been burning fossil fuels created over a
span of millions of years during the course of a century...

...Life is going to change. Get used to it. Then figure out
how to enjoy it. That's not hard. Just imagine carfree cities."

- J.H. Crawford,