cities -> economies of scale -> greener

Really enjoyed this New York Times column on Math and the City which uses mathematics to connect cities with organisms; i.e., cities are living things. 

I especially liked this paragraph that describes how city size affects things like infrastructure, specifically gas stations.

For instance, if one city is 10 times as populous as another one, does it need 10 times as many gas stations? No. Bigger cities have more gas stations than smaller ones (of course), but not nearly in direct proportion to their size. The number of gas stations grows only in proportion to the 0.77 power of population. The crucial thing is that 0.77 is less than 1. This implies that the bigger a city is, the fewer gas stations it has per person. Put simply, bigger cities enjoy economies of scale. In this sense, bigger is greener. [Emphasis is mine.]

This supports my unfiltered response to the question I hear since moving from the city (“So how’s suburban living?”): I miss the density.

This entry was posted in community, environment, everyday, sustainable, urbanism and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s