Low Carbon City in Asia

Action towards Resource-efficiency and Low Carbon City in Asia

Why resource-efficient and low carbon cities?

Posted by Low Carbon City in Asia on June 15, 2010

Cities across the globe account for about 2% of the earth’s landmass and host 3.1 billion (51%) of the world’s population. In 1950, only 231 million (17.1%) people lived in urban areas in Asia. It has now increased more than seven times to about 1.8 billion (42%). With more than two fifths of the world’s population, Asia now has the largest number of urban dwellers. Cities as units of production and consumption have not only been consuming natural resources, but also degrading the environment through generation of waste and polluting land, water and air. It is estimated that cities contributed to 19.8 Gt of CO2 emissions from energy use in 2006 and are expected to emit 30.8 Gt by 2030. Cities have played leading roles in economic, social, political and culture throughout the history of human development. Moreover, they are centers of innovation and can advance clean energy systems, promote sustainable transportation and waste management. Cities are also the centers of economic and political activity. Addressing city level issues will help progress climate policy discussions. Cities are vulnerable to the impacts of climate change and many Asian cities are at risk of flood and inundation from rising sea levels and rivers. Therefore, cities need to act to address climate change by implementing bold steps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) and adapt to future uncertainties. Therefore, targeting cities as the first line of action would help countries simultaneously to address resource conservation and to progress towards low carbon societies.

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