Climate-change criers sing redundant tune

Well, yet again! Redundancy is one thing, but enough is enough. Month after month, the AJC publishes letters from the same group of writers, many Citizens Climate Lobby members, pushing their carbon fee and dividend mantra (“Maria’s toll shows need to cut emissions,” Readers Write, June 8, and “Md. flood shows our climate vulnerability,” Readers Write, June 12). Wittingly or not, you and other papers have become the communications arm of the Citizens Climate Lobby with their letter-to-the-editor targeted activism. Perhaps the papers are OK being used this way, but maybe the organization should start paying their own advertising fees. And if the papers don’t want to keep the fees, they could be allocated as dividends to subscribers pained by the letter writers’ constant climate-change tirade.


Prudence can make transit enhancements pay off

Re: “Atlanta Gambles on MARTA Expansion,” News, June 10, Atlanta’s gamble on transit expansion, if done right, can indeed pay off. MARTA is off to a good start with its emphasis on broadening coverage, improving frequency of service, and upgrading communication with riders, both centrally and at stops. As has been established elsewhere, these are the kinds of steps necessary to boost ridership: better aligning users’ needs with service provided. Especially at times with so much uncertainty about the futures of transportation choices and technologies, proceeding incrementally is the only prudent course. As it happens, too, this approach is cost-effective and allows for innovations, like installing sheltered bus stops with next-bus communication, sidewalks that connect them with riders, and testing out neighborhood circulators. The effects on ridership, always the key to transit feasibility, will inform what more-robust investments are needed, in what order, at what cost, and in interaction with changing technologies and travel behaviors.