“Have you watched ‘The End of Suburbia’?” No, I haven’t, and here’s why.

An acquaintance recently asked me that very question.

“Jason, have you watched ‘The End of Suburbia‘? The focus is on Oil Depletion and the impact it will have on suburbs and ex-burbs.”

“No,” I replied. “I’ve heard of it, but my interest in seeing it is minimal, despite being a biodiesel activist. I know that makes me a Bad Liberal, but I hardly have time to watch non-depressing movies as it is.”
That got an adequate chuckle, so I continued.
“Though I support and agree with most everything that they’re saying, I’m not actually all that on board with the Peak Oil crowd. I feel we need to be more concerned with rebuilding our cities (right now!) to handle the future waves of suburban immigration. It’s already starting to some extent here in Milwaukee, and a very far-flung exurban development is actually probably the first sign that the ‘End of Suburbia’ is neigh.”
What should I do? How much more can I do? I already drive a Volkswagen Jetta TDi, which is one of the most fuel efficient vehicles available to consumers. During the spring summer and fall, I bike as much as possible. Although my attempt at starting a biodiesel co-op fell through in the end, I’m very busy with local gardening and urban farming groups. I take the bus more than I used to, and sometimes, I have to drive. Or I just want to. I know damn well what can happen while on the road, but I take that risk into account each time, often subconsciously more than not. And I know I’m using valuable resources that cannot be replenished blah blah blah. But really. How much can one guy do? Yes, a lot. So I do what I can. And then some. No, I haven’t seen everything that’s out there, and I don’t want to. End of rant.

Author: Jason Haas

Jason is an elected member of the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors, occasionally moonlights as an amateur gardener, and is a proud father of two, or three, depending on how you do the math.