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Environmental Research Digest – December 2012

Summary

The engineering consultancy Atkins, the Department for International Development (DfID) and University College London (UCL) prepared a report examining cities’ vulnerability to climate change. The “Future Proofing Cities” study evaluated 129 cities across 20 countries and suggests over 100 policy proposals that could help cities “future proof” themselves.

Key findings

  • Rapidly expanding cities risk locking in unsustainable infrastructure which increases vulnerability to climate change
  • Cities already account for up to 80 per cent of energy consumption and 75 per cent of carbon emissions, despite occupying just two per cent of the planet’s land mass.
  • Many developing world cities are struggling with over-stretched infrastructure or starting to encroach on areas at risk from flooding, storms, and droughts.
  • These cities are particularly at risk from disruptions to or price fluctuations in the flow of energy, food, and water.
  • The 100 policy proposals that could help cities “future proof” themselves range from low cost, relatively easy to implement initiatives, such as improving water and sanitation services or introducing building regulations, to more high impact but harder to achieve measures such as large scale renewable energy generation projects.

Author(s)

Atkins, the Department for International Development (DfID) and University College London (UCL)

Source

Further details