China has detailed its urban planning vision, which has been designed to make its sprawling cities more inclusive, safer and better places to live.
[...] policymakers pledged to transform urban development patterns and improve city management.
The last time China held such a high-level meeting was in 1978, when only 18 percent of the population lived in cities. By the end of 2011, in excess of 50 percent of the population called the city their home. — chinadaily.com.cn
Related news on Archinect:China considering drastic ban on coalDisastrous landslide burying dozens in Shenzhen likely caused by piled up soil from construction workBeijing's latest "airpocalypse" is bad enough for city to issue first ever red alertChina’s "most influential architect" is not...
It is well established that white roofs can mitigate the urban heat island effect, reflecting the sun's energy back into space and reducing a city's temperature. In a new study of Guangzhou, China, researchers found that during a heat wave, the effect is significantly more pronounced. Reflective roofs, also called cool roofs, save energy by keeping buildings cooler, thus reducing the need for air conditioning. — Science Daily
According to a new study by Berkeley lab researchers Dev Millstein, Ronnen Levinson, and Pablo Rosado, alongside Meichun Cao and Zhaohui Lin of the Institute of Atmospheric Physic in Beijing, so-called "cool roofs," or roofs painted white, substantially reduce the urban heat island effect during...
Last weekend in the outskirts of Paris, the rap of a green-tipped gavel announced an historically-unprecedented international climate agreement. A sense of accomplishment suffused the crowds gathered locally and the official statements broadcast globally – President Obama called the deal “a...
In addition to the dense mixed-use development above the rail yards, the new draft calls for doubling the size of Drexel Park, a river overlook, a series of boardwalks and green spaces along the west bank trail of the Schuylkill, and a transit terminal for buses. — Philly.curbed.com
The last deep-pit coal mine in the U.K. plans to shut its doors here next week, heralding the end of a centuries-old industry that helped fuel the industrial revolution and build the British Empire.
The shutdown [...] represents a victory for advocates of reducing carbon emissions after world leaders gathered in Paris to discuss how to combat global warming, with coal in the cross hairs. It also reflects a glut of energy on world markets, from crude oil to natural gas and coal itself. — wsj.com
The impact of data centers—really, of computation in general—isn’t something that really galvanizes the public, partly because that impact typically happens at a remove from everyday life. The average amount of power to charge a phone or a laptop is negligible, but the amount of power required to stream a video or use an app on either device invokes services from data centers distributed across the globe, each of which uses energy to perform various processes [...] — the Atlantic
"Still, it seems weird that most people—most engineers building the platforms people use every day, even—lack the basic comprehension that different online activities have different energy impacts, or that an individual’s online activities have energy impact at all beyond a laptop’s...
If there is one thing Britons dislike more than their country’s housing shortage, it is the idea of building more houses. Even as a lack of homes has sent prices through the roof... cities have remained ringed by protected “green belts” of land that are off-limits to developers. Attempts to build on them provoke outcry. But on December 7th the government published a consultation on letting councils allocate “appropriate small-scale sites in the green belt specifically for starter homes”... — the Economist
Jakarta sinks an average of three inches a year, and parts of the coast are going down as much as 11 inches a year [...]
In an attempt to halt the damage, authorities are building a gigantic wall off the coast, measuring 25 miles (40 kilometers) long and 80 feet (24 meters) high, National Geographic reports. To fund the $40 billion and 30-year-long project, the city will also create 17 artificial islands, on which developers can build luxury homes, offices, and shopping malls. — qz.com
A Dutch firm, KuiperCompagnons, is assisting with design. The first phase of the three-part plan is underway, although critics say that the project will encourage more government corruption and actually cause more environmental damage than it would help prevent.
Health warnings have been issued this week as atmospheric pollution is set to rise to dangerously high levels on Thursday and Friday, with levels of breathable toxic particles reaching 100 micrograms per cubic meter.
In a bid to stop pollution reaching dangerous levels, the council is making the city's buses and metro free on Thursday and Friday to reduce the emissions caused by Turin's heavy traffic. — thelocal.it
Other cities coping with mitigating air pollution:Beijing's latest "airpocalypse" is bad enough for city to issue first ever red alertCar-free events significantly improve air qualityDelhi’s air pollution is worse than Beijing's. A new app measures the air quality in real time.Giant bubbles...
Last week, UCLA’s Hammer Museum hosted the final iteration of its 2015 program "Next Wave: Quality, Quantity, and Accessibility of Water in the 21st Century," a robust discussion series that has gathered experts in various fields to explicate and consider the most pressing issues surrounding...
A red alert should go into effect if there is a prediction that the air quality index will stay above 200 for more than 72 hours. The United States government rates above 200 as “very unhealthy,” and 301 to 500 as “hazardous.” At 7 p.m. Monday, the Beijing municipal reading was 253. [...]
At international climate change talks, including the ones now underway in Paris, Chinese officials have promised to curb coal use in order to address both air pollution and carbon dioxide emissions. — nytimes.com
More from Beijing:Beijing's challenges to become the center of Jing-Jin-Ji — a supercity of 130 million peopleThe tiny village library that draws Beijingers in drovesBeijing mayor says air pollution makes his city "unlivable"China considering drastic ban on coal
Many urban planners think abundant parking goes hand in hand with LA's perpetual traffic woes, pollution, and lack of density. The perception that there will always be available parking leads drivers to neglect public transportation options, contributing to traffic, as well as to the increase in pollution caused by circling the block in search of a spot. Additionally, zoning codes obligate real estate developers to build a certain number of spaces with every project — la.curbed.com
More on the problematics of plentiful parking:California to decrease parking requirements for affordable housingUCLA professor and "parking guru" Donald Shoup to retireFlexible Parking Structures as Civic CatalystsTrading Parking Lots for Affordable Housing"Graphing Parking" charts out of whack...
A global shift towards a vegan diet is vital to save the world from hunger, fuel poverty and the worst impacts of climate change, a UN report said today.
As the global population surges towards a predicted 9.1 billion people by 2050, western tastes for diets rich in meat and dairy products are unsustainable, says the report from United Nations Environment Programme's (UNEP) international panel of sustainable resource management. — The Guardian
"Professor Edgar Hertwich, the lead author of the report, said: 'Animal products cause more damage than [producing] construction minerals such as sand or cement, plastics or metals. Biomass and crops for animals are as damaging as [burning] fossil fuels.'"Related coverage:Unchecked climate change...
Our urban centers were not designed with cyclists in mind; we’re a car-centric society. American cities can try piecemeal approaches, but the reality is that sharing the road is only a small part of the solution. Bikes and cars need their own dedicated thoroughfares to keep everyone as safe as possible, and to encourage people to choose clip-in pedals over gas ones... — Wired
San Francisco recently announced plans – under the initiative Vision Zero SF – to aggressively tackle traffic-related deaths in the city. Part of that plan includes incorporating elevated bike lanes, with Market Street as a pilot project. But according to Jordan Crucchiola, who invokes the...
A new study has, for the first time, estimated the total volume of groundwater present on the Earth. The results show that we're using up the water supply quicker than it can be naturally replaced, while future research will seek to determine exactly how long it will be until modern groundwater runs dry.
Groundwater is an extremely precious resource, being a key source of sustenance for humanity and the ecosystems we inhabit. — gizmag.com
(Ground)water-related articles on Archinect:And the winners of Archinect's Dry Futures competition, "Pragmatic" category, are...And the winners of Archinect's Dry Futures competition, "Speculative" category, are...How is water used in California?World Faces Water Crisis in Less Than...
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