Archive for the ‘Sustainable Cities’ Category

The term “Sustainable Cities” refers to cities around the world who are actively making changes to become more sustainable. By recognising the interest, motivations, models of these cities we hope to encourage others to also make such changes. If you would like to tell the world about what your city is doing to achieve urban sustainability and would like to add your city to this Sustainable Cities list please do so by making a post on the site. To do this go to “How to use this site” and follow the prompts. You can see the complete list of Sustainable Cities here.

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A world class revolution in the making? Sydney’s clean energy plan.

Posted in Sustainable Cities, Visions by Rob Eales on November 1st, 2010

Source: The Fifth Estate

Image: pierre pouliquin via flickr CC license: Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic

Image: pierre pouliquin via flickr CC license

From Sydney’s clean energy plan could be a world class revolution in the making by Boris Kelly

A packed house at Sydney Town Hall on Monday 25 October heard Alan Jones, chief development officer, Energy and Climate Change for the City of Sydney, declare his aim to transform Sydney into a carbon free city reliant on 100 per cent renewable energy, in a plan that has been lauded as potentially one of the world’s “great revolutions”.

The purpose of the event, part of the City Talk series, was  to update the community on progress of Sydney City Council’s 2030 Sustainable Sydney plan.

The plan has set a target of reducing carbon emissions by 70 per cent by 2030, but Jones went further, suggesting that with the addition of bio-gas to power the City’s proposed trigeneration plants, the magic 100 per cent could potentially be achieved.

In his introduction to the event, leading climate scientist Tim Flannery called the City’s master plan “one of the great revolutions that we are seeing around the world.” In a video recorded interview Flannery told the audience: “You won’t know Sydney in 10  years time. The sources of energy will be utterly transformed and this is being done by the City of Sydney because there is no other organisation that can do it. The City has access to the land and the services.”

Read the rest at The Fifth Estate

The Climate Group Plans To Develop Low Carbon Cities In China

Posted in Sustainable Cities by fedwards on January 28th, 2009

Please find an abstract from a news story posted on the World Business Council for Sustainable Development website. More and more sustainable cities can only be a good thing!

The Climate Group Plans To Develop Low Carbon Cities In China

ChinaCSR, 19 January 2009 – The Climate Group has announced plans to develop 15 to 20 low carbon cities in China in the next three to five years to encourage the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions and address the problem of climate change. The Climate Group said in a report released in Beijing that China would miss the best opportunity to retain its technology advantage and core competitiveness in the world market if it lets slip the opportunities brought by the global financial crisis.

Wu Changhua, director for Greater China of The Climate Group, said that as a path for development, the core aim of a low-carbon economy is to increase energy efficiency and change the energy structure. She said that this would mean cleaner, more efficient and lower green house gas emission for China. Wu added that besides big cities like Beijing, Shanghai, and Tianjin, the Climate Group would mainly target second-tier and third-tier cities in China for the low-carbon initiative as these smaller cities provide more opportunity for development.

To read the full story visit the World Business Council for Sustainable Development website.

Can Sustainable Cities Save The Planet?

Posted in Sustainable Cities by walter libby on October 8th, 2008

By Walter Libby

Can sustainable save the planet?
This is a good question and it deserves a good answer. But a more relevant question is, can sustainable cities save the United States? Our rising unemployment rate in the global economy has finally caught up with us—we are out of bubbles and are now a nation at risk. With nine straight months of job losses and a looming financial crisis, our prospects look grim—despite the efforts being made to prop up our financial system.

The problem is we are in liquidity trap. Here, despite low interest rates, the infusion of new blood, the cash that is being pumped into banks will just sit in their vaults as recession forces consumers to cut back on spending forcing firms to cut back on production, investments and workers perpetuating the cycle pushing the economy ever deeper into crisis.

The question now becomes, how do we get out the trap? We can’t look to a turn around in residential construction. But we can look to a turn around in our thinking as we shift from urban sprawl to the development of new cities designed along sustainable lines. So together with their development and the investments in renewable energy they will begin to pull us out of the trap.

The advent of peak oil has convinced venture capitalists to get busy in saving the planet. Now we have to sell the idea of new cities to investors, developers, and the people, and that requires a model that captures their imagination and investment dollars. So following in the footsteps of Ebenezer Howard, here’s how I see cities of tomorrow: clusters of neighborhoods (linked by elevated transportation arteries shared by electric vehicles, bikes, pedestrians and rapid transit systems) will form the city. These neighborhoods are large terraced multi-storied structures sheltering thousands. Here their terraces are reserved for greenhouses and homes and their centers for factories and fully controlled-environment farms.

So, as you walk out into your neighborhood you encounter not hallways but wide walkways, allies and breezeways lined with trees and plants, schools, hospitals, libraries, theaters, businesses, shops, and restaurants—all within walking distance, or a short elevator ride. And when you go to the first floor, at ground level you find barns (for pigs, beef and dairy cows, and chickens that are harvested next door) opening onto natural habitant mixed with organic farms, orchards, parks, playgrounds, and golf courses. Here, instead of sending our table and produce straps, our unwanted leftovers, dry bread, spoiled fruit to landfills, we recycle them to neighborhood barnyards or to community organic orchards and gardens.

Once there is a sufficient population, a larger central city is built. This is the cultural center of the whole. Here you have universities, the larger hospitals, museums, aquariums, zoos, sports stadiums, theaters for the performing arts, large central parks, plazas, street performers, and so on.

Read the rest of this entry »

Another sustainable city website – introducing Moraga, California

Posted in Sustainable Cities by fedwards on September 16th, 2008

I’ve recently added the link to the Sustainable Moraga website (under Americas on the right-hand side bar) to the list of Sustainable Cities. This website is like many others around the world who are aspiring to make sustainable changes at a city-level. Read more about Sustainable Moraga and its goals from the abstract below from their website.

Sustainable Moraga is a local, grassroots citizens’ group founded in 2005 to help Moraga become a more sustainable community. We believe that all of us—local residents, businesses and town government—can take proactive, meaningful steps to minimize our footprint on the planet. Through awareness, education and action, Sustainable Moraga helps people and organizations in Moraga become “conscious consumers” actively preserving our environment and making Moraga a better place to live.

We are motivated by a concern for the human impact of such issues as global warming, air and water pollution, energy costs, fossil fuel depletion, waste creation and disposal, harmful pesticides and other hazardous chemicals and products. Locally, we are not immune to these problems and their negative role in cancer, asthma, plant and animal survival, temperature variation, growing season changes, terrorism and foreign resource reliance.