The flipside of living in the NYC suburb of, say, Keyport, NJ and commuting to the city is the pollution output of about 75 zillion extreme commuters, who spend more than three hours a day in transit.
Automobile exhaust in the US contributes roughly 1.9 billion tons a year to the global carbon cloud, more than the emissions of India, Japan, or Russia.
Even worse are the 40 million lawn mowers drowning each other out every damned Sunday morning from April to November: Each spews 11 cars' worth of pollutants per hour. Never saw a catalytic converter on one of those f--kers, did you?
The fact is, urban living is kinder to the planet.
A Manhattanite's carbon footprint is 30 percent smaller than the average American's. The rate of car ownership is among the lowest in the country; 65 percent of the population walks, bikes, or rides mass transit to work. Large apartment buildings are the most efficient dwellings to heat and cool.
And the third largest mode of transportation in NYC? The humble, piss-smelling counterweight elevator. Put into service in 1622, it creates less greenhouse gases per capita than the lowest emission vehicle, and which has made vertical density possible from Dubai to Taipei.
Don't buy everything that Irish rockstars and the prototypical tree-hugger is selling. they are misinformed: Urban Living is kinder to the planet than the suburban lifestyle.