Southlake Residents Emit More Carbon Dioxide Than Anyone Else in North Texas

Categories: The Environment

TexasCarbonFootprint.jpg
UC Berkeley Cool Climate Network
Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, have done it. Using science, they've confirmed your deepest suspicion: Southlake really is the worst.

In this case, it's not the exceptionally high number of traffic tickets they hand out. It's the exceptionally large amount of carbon dioxide (90.8 tons) the average Southlaker belches into the atmosphere every year.

See also: The Biggest Speed-Trap Cities in North Texas

Probably, some other exurb somewhere tops that, but you'll be hard pressed to find it on the UC Berkeley researchers' interactive map, which is broken down by ZIP code. In North Texas, its closest competitors are Colleyville (83.3 tons of CO2 per person per year); Flower Mound (80.5); Sunnyvale (77.5); Argyle (74.2); Allen (72.1); Plano (71) and Lewisville (70.7).

The data supports the scientists' argument, which is that suburbanization "undermines greenhouse gas benefits of urban population density." In North Texas, it also suggests that affluence and per-capita energy consumption are linked. On the map, the Park Cities represent a splotch of red on mostly green Dallas. And the more prosperous northern suburbs are a brighter shade than those to the south.

This makes intuitive sense. The further-flung the exurb, the more driving it takes to get things done. (Good luck finding public transportation in Southlake). Similarly, it takes a lot more energy to run an eight-room Highland Park mansion than an efficiency apartment in South Dallas which, with 34.7 tons of carbon dioxide produced per person per year, is Dallas' most efficient neighborhood.

(h/t Patrick Kennedy)

Send your story tips to the author, Eric Nicholson.

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46 comments
rusknative
rusknative

what is needed here is a bunch of multibillion dollar fast rail lines to carry people and their SUV about the state from all the suburban locations and fast growing towns with good schools.

Sotiredofitall
Sotiredofitall topcommenter

"also suggests that affluence and per-capita energy consumption are linked" - Brilliant


Can I get someone to fund my study on increased per-capita water consumption in affluent neighborhoods?  


Catbird
Catbird

I suppose North Korea is their benchmark.

NotReallyThanks
NotReallyThanks

If only all the people who whine about CO2 emissions would contribute to the cause by tying a reusable bag tightly over their heads. 

Threeboys
Threeboys

Look at all the yellow, orange and red in the panhandle and Oklahoma. Wealthy cattle?

holmantx
holmantx topcommenter

Must be all the heavy industry and manufacturing in Southlake.

mavdog
mavdog topcommenter

The researchers are linking consumption to carbon emissions.

Using national household surveys, we developed econometric models of demand for energy, transportation, food, goods, and services that were used to derive average household carbon footprints (HCF) for U.S. zip codes, cities, counties, and metropolitan areas. We find consistently lower HCF in urban core cities (40 tCO2e) and higher carbon footprints in outlying suburbs (50 tCO2e), with a range from 25 to >80 tCO2e in the 50 largest metropolitan areas.

no wonder the higher the household incomes, the higher their estimates of carbon emissions by household.

not too comfortable with that linkage. there's some inherent contradictions in applying it the way these researchers have done, and I'd even go so far as to say they are lazy in their research/conclusions.

ozonelarryb
ozonelarryb

The tickets are the key. Cop cars idling for hours.

cactusflinthead
cactusflinthead

Hey McMansions and Super Villas take a lot money to keep cool and/or warm and some days we have to turn on both! This is Texas you know and we moved here from somewhere else so sweating like those Mexicans mowing my yard is NOT an option. Plus that pool is far too cold without some heat and that boat, motorcycle and RV are not going to run on wishes and dreams. Plus the bad traffic on 26 and 1709 isn't getting better on the ride over to Starbucks and Central Market, but don't coordinate lights or widen roads because our pet horses might not like it and we want to keep our Blackjack oaks that were planted by a squirrel when there used to be a barbed wire fence here thirty years ago. So get the hell off my lawn and go back to Dallas you DFH!


lebowski300
lebowski300

So poverty is the "solution"? The trolling should be epic on this comment thread.


everlastingphelps
everlastingphelps topcommenter

Well, yeah, that has always been the environmentalists' dream.  If everyone lives like a caveman in a wet, cold hovel and lives on twigs and berries, then there will be no "impact" on the environment.


Of course, that's just one step towards their plans of zero impact through there being zero people on earth.

James_the_P3
James_the_P3

Oh, and look at super-environmentally conscious Austin down there.  It's the giant red patch about 200 miles south of us.

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin topcommenter

of course, its the stay at home soccer mother of 2 kids driving 7 seater SUV's to Strabucks , the wine store, and their pill dealer.

rusknative
rusknative

@SotiredofitallSuggests that low income folks don't breath out much....holding in the choom smoke??  or dead from gangbangers?

ruddski
ruddski topcommenter

The affluent are trickling down on you.

ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul
ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul topcommenter

@mavdog 

Looking at the actual maps, one item that I had a problem with was the tons of CO2e for the electrical usage.  Adjacent zip codes with similar levels of wealth would have very different amounts for this.  I can see how transportation CO2e is higher in the suburban areas.

rusknative
rusknative

@ozonelarrybbacked up trucks on the traffic jammed highways...interstate slow movement through urban areas.

James_the_P3
James_the_P3

@lebowski300I see plenty of wealthy zip codes that are fairly green.  10023 (i.e., the fifth-wealthiest in the country) is very green, with only 30 metric tons.  The two wealthiest--06830 in Connecticut and 90210 in California--have just more than half of Southlake's emissions.  Even in our fair burg, 75230 (North Dallas) is richer than Southlake and has less than half Southlake's emissions (45 metric tons vs. 90.8).


Perhaps the solution lies more in not being a self-entitled dick driving an Escalade 50 miles each day just to get to and from work while leaving the AC set at 70* in your 6,000 sqft McMansion.

lebowski300
lebowski300

@everlastingphelps Can you cite an example of a (significant) group that explicitly advocates zero people on Earth? I get that some of the dogma of significant groups could lead one to that conclusion, but I've never seen any significant group advocating zero people. Less people, even dramatically less people but not zero is what I've seen advocated. And, within moral confines (and reasonable timelines) advocating for constrained amounts of people planet-wide seems about on par with advocating for the same within a nation-wide paradigm. I guess I'm saying that advocating for limitations (be they, global, national, state, city or family) is not inherently wrong. Arguing the moral confines of how-to, is something that can definitely be debated.

mavdog
mavdog topcommenter

@James_the_P3

ok, let's look at the demos for Southlake (76092) and N Dallas (75230).

2013 pop: 76092=28,118, 75230=28,269

2013 HHs: 76092=8.605, 75230=12,890

Avg HH income: 76092=$225,554, 75230=$128,121

Avg HH size: 76092=3.24, 75230=2.17

Median age of home: 76092=19 yrs, 75230=41 yrs

Est commute: 76092=30 min, 75230=23 min

% commute alone: 76092=80.9%, 75230=79.6%

so tell me, why would Southlake have 2x the carbon emissions than N Dallas? the only answer is because they have a higher average income, as their homes are more energy efficient (going by age) and their commute is only 20% longer.

the CA Berkeley guys aren't doing real analysis, they're giving a lazy opinion based on spendable $. it's a worthless report.

dfwheathen
dfwheathen

@lebowski300 @everlastingphelps I see you don't have the "top commenter" designation. I can tell that you don't know the rules around here: 1) Say the first thing that comes to your mind 2) Include as many logical fallacies as you can 3) Don't respond to "top commenters" unless you have a whole day to get nowhere.

rusknative
rusknative

everlastingwhelps is a TOP COMMENTATOR...congradulations for showing up on the forum every day and coming out trying your best and even if you never made a valid point, you were a brave little guy for attempting logic or intelligence.  You have a great future somewhere so just give it your best and brush your teeth after eating food and don't do drugs.

 @everlastingphelps@lebowski300@dfwheathen

rusknative
rusknative

@dfwheathen@lebowski300@everlastingphelpsTOP COMMENTATOR is like the little trophy that all little kids that show up for the games gets at the end of soccer season when they all get hamburgers and the coach tells them what wonderful kids they are even if they never won a game and spent the entire time watching clouds over the field.

lebowski300
lebowski300

@everlastingphelps Absurd is saying something ridiculously absurd with undefined pronouns and then having absolutely no ability or gumption to back up with even a single link. Even your "your comment was the last" was ridiculously contradictory as it was the last. Now you may rest.

everlastingphelps
everlastingphelps topcommenter

@lebowski300 @dfwheathen I ended the conversation when your last comment was so absurd that it wasn't worth pointing out to you what was obvious to everyone else.  That is why your comment was last.

lebowski300
lebowski300

@dfwheathen Great advice; I will definitely follow it in the future. I guess I got lucky and ended the conversation ended because simple facts got involved.

rusknative
rusknative

@lebowski300there are NO significant liberal rant organizations...only noisy obnoxious ones.

lebowski300
lebowski300

@everlastingphelps I didn't find any ELF|ALF|Earth First! and zero population advocacy or dogma. Lots of radical stuff, some I somewhat agree with and mostly childish. And their exploits and reaches all seemed exaggerated as well. So, not significant. So, not zero population advocats. Since they came so easily to your mind as significant groups that advocate zero population, perhaps you can easily scrounge up some links? In other words, who is "their" and what exactly are their stated plans to achieve zero population?

lebowski300
lebowski300

@everlastingphelps A quick check on these groups reveals two things: they are debatably "significant" and I can't find any actual zero-population dogma. However, that is just a quick look. I will look deeper because it seems that they are less zero-population advocates and more childish boredom on first glance. The only significant zero-population advocates I've ever encountered personally were apocalypse-lovers.

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