It’s a pretty common discussion amongst us environmentalists – which is more eco-friendly, living in the city or living in the country? While there are points for both locations, I was giving this some thought the other day now that I live in a small mountain town of only 6,500 people, which is about 2 hours away from the closest city. While most of the population crams itself into our cities, there are still millions of people who live outside of the cities, living an entirely different kind of lifestyle – and that’s me now. From my perspective, living here is more eco-friendly for several reasons, but there are certainly some advantages of living in a big city as well, so let’s take a look at all of them.
Of course, not all cities are the same nor are all places in the country the same. I can only compare where I used to live, Los Angeles, to where I live now in Northern New Mexico. The house we are renting is only a few block from the town center, meaning we are still able to get by with one car and my bicycle. All shopping, from groceries to the hardware store, are only a few miles away at most – but a lot of country towns are different than that. In Los Angeles I could not leave my house by car at almost any time of day – it was always rush hour. To go the 20 miles to the airport one day a long time ago took 3 hours. 3 hours to go 20 miles; it was that bad. Just the other day I drove 120 miles to the airport here in 2 hours – there isn’t any traffic at all. Many homes and buildings here are powered by solar power, our radio station is 100% solar-powered, and there are a lot of people who catch their own water from the sky. In the city, not many people can have the option of using solar power, as most of them live in condos or apartments. Out here in the country we have our own water-treatment plant that recycles all of our waste water into water used for watering, while in big cities a lot of the dirty water just gets pumped into any nearby body of water. But again, not every person living in the country lives in such a progressive place as this, so it really depends on what community you live in. It is not as simple as comparing apples to oranges; there are many different kinds of both and its not easy to say one is inherently better than the other. What do you think? Do you think one is more eco-friendly than the other? Let me know, would love to hear your thoughts on this!
Los Angeles photo by kla4067
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