Many Small Steps

I’m an incrementalist by nature: I prefer change via many small steps to radical upheaval. That seems to me to be safer, since you can more easily change direction if you find that you’ve made a mistake. But when dealing with very large problems, the early steps can seem like futile nibbling around the edges. …

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How Much Is Enough?

I have mixed and contradictory reactions to “WholeTrees is smartly repurposing timber across the Midwest” by Jamie Evelyn Goldsborough. Certainly it’s true that the use of barely-processed tree trunks and branches is greener than the use of any other structural material. The energy and carbon that go into buildings show up in the production of …

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In Unlikely Places

Following up on my previous very-brief discussion of rooftop gardens, I recommend reading “Can an urban agriculture plan cultivate NYC’s community gardens?” by Caroline Spivak. New York had no tradition of community gardens until the 1970s, when the city’s population hit its post-WWII low and when thousands of old tenements and rowhouses burned down, mostly …

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