Raw, idiom: 14a. in the natural, uncultivated, or unrefined state: nature in the raw.
Interesting article on sub/urbanity and carbon footprints by Harvard economist Edward Glaeser, the gist of it being that
"If you want to be good to the environment, stay away from it. Move to high-rise apartments surrounded by plenty of concrete. Americans who settle in leafy, low-density suburbs will leave a significantly deeper carbon footprint, it turns out, than Americans who live cheek by jowl in urban towers."
The research behind Glaeser's thesis seems pretty legit. Check out his full article in City Journal, along with his parallel commentary over at the NYT Economix blog. I couldn't help but stick my chin in the air when I read his assertion that "the environmental ideal should be an apartment in downtown San Francisco, not a ranch in Marin County." Yessiree.
They may be very, very insignificant choices, but I've always felt that by choosing to live in a small-ish city flat, using public transport and/or walking instead of driving a car, and keeping our heating and energy costs down, I'm able to do a little something to shrink my carbon footprint. This study reaffirms that. Although it may spell bad prospects for getting that Vespa that I've been eyeing in the store windows over on Pine Street...
Green Cities, Brown Suburbs (City Journal)