Another Good Reason Not to Fly

Matt Yglesias on the manifold benefits of intercity rail:

"(N)ot only is intercity rail energy efficient compared to other means of transportation but it's typically electricity which can be produced with much less pollution per unit of energy output. With automobiles, of course, we're all looking forward to the future of electrification as well. But I've never heard anyone outline a remotely credible low-pollution alternative to jet fuel. Now obviously there are also distances across which rail doesn't work as a credible alternative to air travel. But for shorter distance flights it's important to understand that air travel is currently benefitting from a major unpriced externality in the form of air pollution. If we started taxing greenhouse gas pollution, then rail starts looking like a much better option on a range of short routes that are currently popular for air travel."
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Jeffrey Goldberg is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and a recipient of the National Magazine Award for Reporting. He is the author of Prisoners: A Story of Friendship and Terror. More

Before joining The Atlantic in 2007, Goldberg was a Middle East correspondent, and the Washington correspondent, for The New Yorker. He was previouslly a correspondent for The New York Times Magazine and New York magazine. He has also written for the Jewish Daily Forward and was a columnist for The Jerusalem Post.

Goldberg's book Prisoners was hailed as one of the best books of 2006 by the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Slate, The Progressive, Washingtonian magazine, and Playboy. He received the 2003 National Magazine Award for Reporting for his coverage of Islamic terrorism and the 2005 Anti-Defamation League Daniel Pearl Prize. He is also the winner of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists prize for best international investigative journalist; the Overseas Press Club award for best human-rights reporting; and the Abraham Cahan Prize in Journalism.

In 2001, Goldberg was appointed the Syrkin Fellow in Letters of the Jerusalem Foundation, and in 2002 he became a public-policy scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.

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