I like this image. It’s suggesting that if you take suburban sprawl into account, then US cities are more massive than is popularly believed. I think it’s really cool. I like the idea of a gigantic mega city spanning from Boston to Atlanta. The setting in the Gibson book Neuromancer was called BAMA, the Boston- Atlanta Metropolitan Axis. The Star Wars franchise has various incarnations of the monolithic city planet. America’s not quite there yet, but with the current trends in US immigration, population growth is likely. Urban growth would trend along the same lines. I like living in the big city.
I think I like it because of my love for Tokyo and the massive sprawl resultant from limited space. Not that Tokyo is the only example of this. Singapore, Hong Kong, Osaka and Souel are all crowded, compact, clean with ultra modern architeture. People are also largely considerate of others and crime is low.
I think the ecological impact would be fairly significant in the sense that it would damage woodland areas and dislocate indigenous wild life. However with a higher concentration of people, a higher demand would be created for localized supply distribution. This could make electric vehicle use in the United States more feasible, helping to drive down CO2 emissions.
As for electric consumption of households and the manufacturing sector, my favorite alternative energy concept is the Orbital solar collector. Massive satellites placed in geosynchronous orbit collect sun light without atmospheric interference. The energy would be transmitted via microwaves to ground based collection dishes. Microwaves do not degrade in the atmosphere like sunlight which is the problem of solar collectors on Earth. This transmitted energy would power a series of massive batteries. The actual distribution of electricity would be the same as today .
Image from here