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Sustainable city

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Sustainable city

Moderated by I2I Admin
This is a discussion forum associated with the International Student Carbon Footprint Challenge (ISCFC).

Here's your chance not just to be the mayor, but the original city planner as well! Imagine a medium sized city that would be developed with modern, low carbon transportation in mind. What would that city look like? Would that make you more likely to want to live there?
 
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Discussions Discussion Sustainable city
Logan C-US, Feb. 28, 2014

If I were to create a city whose goal is to have low carbon transportation, things would be a lot different from where I live. Not having big diesel trucks and such would be the first thing to eliminate and then start to emphasis on walking or riding bikes to certain places. My city wouldn’t have as many roads but would instead have trails and bike lanes. Even though it would be better for the environment, to me personally I would not like to live there.

Logan C-US
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Discussions Discussion Sustainable city
Courtney R-US, Feb. 25, 2014

Living in the United States, we tend to take advantage of the opportunities of transportation we have. In creating a modern, low carbon transportation city, it would be very different from today’s modern city. The city would be filled with sidewalks, bus stops, railways for a train going in and out of the city limits, and cars filled with people carpooling to get to a certain area. In having a city that uses less individual source of transportation, the streets will be filled with people walking and biking to and from their destination on the sidewalks, the streets will be less populated with cars and more busses and public transit will appear. In a modern, low carbon transportation city, the air will be much cleaner and people will be much healthier.

Courtney R-US
Comments (2)
  • Kenna Babson Kenna Babson Feb. 25, 2014
    I agree with you Courtney! I think it would be great to have high accessibility to sidewalks and bus stops. Sometimes in suburban areas there are not many safe sidewalks to walk on or ride bikes on and I think that is one of the issues when it comes to picking an alternative to cars. A city where the majority does not drive cars would be a very intriguing city that I believe many people would come to. Since the result of this would be less air pollution I agree that it would probably be a much healthier environment.
  • Kelsey Bufford Kelsey Bufford Feb. 26, 2014
    I agree with Courtney! With the amount of cars we have today, the pollution rates have gone up. While driving around, it is noticed that in a car there is normally never more than one or two people per car. If we were to carpool with each other, maybe three to four people per car, the amount of pollution would significantly decrease. Adding bike lanes or sidewalks would also decrease pollution and promote exercise. A few simple things could help our environment significantly.

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Discussions Discussion Sustainable city
Niall Patrick, Feb. 10, 2014

In this type of city, that has a central focus on low carbon transportation, I can imagine a clean environment and atmosphere where there is little to no smog and clear visibility for miles. This type of clean environment is rare to see in cities as there are lots of pollutants and bad emissions coming from cars that have high carbon emissions. A goal I would have as a mayor of this town is to make the city look like the outdoors and the wildlife environments. This would offer a large benefit towards the atmosphere and in result I would expect people to move to this city as a city with low emissions is in very high demand these days as global warming and climate change are becoming real and serious threats. Ultimately people are drawn to clean and ecofriendly cities and it would be my goal to bring people the city, increase GDP and make clean energy a new energy.

Niall Patrick
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Discussions Discussion Sustainable city
Jason Hodin, Oct. 18, 2013

way to go team Stanford!

http://news.stanford.edu/news/2013/october/solar-home-results-101813.html
Jason Hodin
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Discussions Discussion Sustainable city
Veronica C-USA, Oct. 17, 2013

Everyone in my community drives to where they need to be. The problem is that we are only 25.64 sq km large. It takes approximately 20 minutes tops to walk through downtown, and about 5 minutes to get from the local market back to the suburban area of town. It would take even less time biking, which 90% of the community knows how to do. Which makes you wonder, why doesn’t everyone do this. I mean, yes it can get to about 40 degrees Celsius, but during the fall and spring the weather is very nice. We need to get out more, that would lower the town’s carbon footprint by about, oh, a lot to be frank.

Veronica C-USA
Comments (2)
  • Adam S-USA Adam S-USA Oct. 17, 2013
    I agree with you Veronica because like you said it would make much more sense to walk or ride your bike. Also it saves time so I just don't get why people still use their cars all the time. If 90% of the community knows how to ride bikes I wonder how many people do ride their bike everywhere.
  • Caitlin Bond Caitlin Bond Feb. 26, 2014
    I think that overall, the usage of automobiles is used solely for convenience. While I do completely agree that lowering the use of cars would be a great positive impact on the environment, I do see where people find a need for efficiency in the fast paced lives people live today.

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Discussions Discussion Sustainable city
Rebecka WF-Sweden, Oct. 14, 2013

If I were to live in a city that is ideal when it comes to carbon emissions, there would firstly be transportation with bio-fuel or electricity only. You don’t need to walk or ride your bike everywhere, as long as you keep CO2 emissions low by not using fossil fuel. Public buildings such as schools, hospitals, malls, grocery stores should be built with energy efficient solutions in mind. Windows as well as walls with a lot of isolation to keep the cold out in the winter, and the heat out during the summer. Not only would that keep down the emissions, but also the cost for all the households. The air and the environment in this city would be a lot cleaner, since there’s almost no exhaust from petrol cars, and the sound level of electrical cars is a lot lower. I would definitely prefer to live in a city like this. It would feel better knowing, that your house don’t have a negative impact on the climate change with you just being able to live there. Or that every time you take the bus to work, fossil oil is not wasted.
There are so many solutions out there, in progress and waiting to be discovered. The only problem is both research and restoration and renovation cost a fortune. To make an entire city eco friendly would be a huge project. But i think that’s what’s needed to be done in the future to keep the temperatures down. Give people no other better, cheaper option but to live as “eco friends”.

Rebecka WF-Sweden
Comments (7)
  • Kathryn A-USA Kathryn A-USA Oct. 17, 2013
    Wouldn't we all love to live in this place! There are so many simple things we can do individually to lower our emissions. We can reduce the amount of meat we eat by having at least 1 vegetarian day per week. Not only will this reduce our footprint but prove great for our health as well! Double whammy! Instead of just flinging everything in the trash bin we can be thoughtful to what can be recycled like glass, paper, plastic and aluminum. The simple actions are the ones that grow into big things. Even if we all can't go out and make huge advancements in our communities to reduce our footprint, we can do things individually and inspire others to do the same.
  • Devyn Fisher Devyn Fisher Oct. 18, 2013
    I think you have some good ideas in the post. We all definitely need to cut down on our emissions, and not using fossil fuels is a good start. However, the hard part of making an entire city like this is that all of these things are very expensive. I think there needs to be an agreement between several countries to all enforce carbon changes. The main thing that will change how much carbon is released is what the public does. Everyone here can make a big difference in the world if we all make a small change.
  • Lysandra A Lysandra A Oct. 22, 2013
    Hi! I'm from California, US. Having a city like this would be great but what about the rest of the world? It would make some difference but all the other cities would stay the same. Like Dylan said it would be very difficult to get a whole city to start reducing their carbon footprints. Devyn also pointed out that it would be expensive to make an entire city eco-friendly but it's similar to solar panels. It's pretty expensive to buy them but in the long run they do help reduce your electricity bill and they are good for the environment. Hopefully in the near future we can accomplish a city like this.
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Discussions Discussion Sustainable city
Catherine Bebbington, Oct. 14, 2013

Hi, my name is Catherine and I’m from the United States. I agree with what you have said in your post. We have the alternatives for the harmful way that we live, its just making the switch. Cities are one of the most polluted areas in the world so we need to make the switch their first to healthier and earthfriendly methods. Its not hard to make this switch and I beleive does only take one person to make this change. It takes one person to start and than others will follow. I do believe that our time is rumming out and that creating sustainable cities in important before its too late.

Catherine Bebbington
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Discussions Discussion Sustainable city
Hanna A-Sweden, Oct. 14, 2013

My name is Hanna, and I’m from Sweden. While reading different post here on Einztein I found that many people are willing to change their habits to lessen their carbon footprint, but one person won’t make a difference. We need to reach out to the whole world. Everyone need to contribute if we ever want to success in creating a sustainable world. Introducing this subject to children and teenagers is a good start but the ones who can make a huge different and change a whole country’s carbon footprint is not the individual, it’s the leaders. Today many political leaders believe that other issus are more important than climate change, but they need to change their view and soon because our time is running out.

http://www.newstatesman.com/politics/2013/06/david-cameron-hasnt-spoken-about-climate-change-three-years-time-running-out
Hanna A-Sweden
Comments (15)
  • Pam Miller Pam Miller Oct. 14, 2013
    Hannah, You are right. We need to make climate change a priority for our country's leaders so that widespread change will happen. Our voices can influence our leaders.
  • Marisa R- usa Marisa R- usa Oct. 15, 2013
    Hi Hannah, i agree completely with what you are saying about climate change being an issue that is often overlooked. The only thing is i believe one person does make a difference. Every little bit we save helps. The leaders won't be able to do it on their own either. I agree we all need to come together and influence each other.
  • Earl A-USA Earl A-USA Oct. 17, 2013
    Hello Hannah. I would like to add that there is also the possibility of not just one person changing his/her environmental impact, but a collection of people in a community agreeing to do so as well. People on a nationwide scale could also consider taking actions for themselves to help the environment. Such actions of good will do not have to come by pressuring from political leaders.

    That could be coupled with the help of political leaders who may advocate reforms to various environment polluting activities, such as fossil-fuel power plants and creating too much waste. I am simply offering another possibility for helping the environment that is not involving the help of a government. One could use your idea as well as doing environmental actions on a community wide scale.
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Discussions Discussion Sustainable city
Elana S-USA, Oct. 11, 2013

Hi, my name is Elana. I currently go to high school in Oakland, California, but lived in Tempe, Arizona for 13 years before. One major logistical and cultural difference I have noticed between the two areas, is the amount of walking people do, and the amount of public transit they use. In Arizona, people almost never walk anywhere. I had friends who lived just 1 mile from our middle school, yet would have their parents drive them to and from school each day! Instead of walking to friends houses or to public transit, people would simply drive everywhere they needed to go. Although walking is not an option in the 115 degree summers, the mild winters, springs, and falls were perfectly fine conditions for walking. Another reason for the lack of walking could be the distance between housing and shopping, but this was not an issue for many. In addition, use of public transit was almost unheard of, especially with teenagers. On the other hand, people walk and use public transit as much as they can in the Bay Area. Whether spending time with friends, running errands, or getting to and from work or school, much more people walk or take public transit. Oakland and the entire Bay Area has clearly made an effort to make cities walker friendly, and make public transit an affordable and convenient option. Unlike Arizona, it is the cultural norm to walk places and use BART and buses. In conclusion, I think key components to a sustainable city are convenience and availability of public transit, as well as developments for a walker friendly layout. This could include more sidewalks, safe crosswalks, and close proximity of houses to shopping areas. Lastly, a cultural and social acceptance and encouragement of walking and public transit needs to be present for a sustainable city to succeed.

Elana S-USA
Comments (4)
  • Veronica C-USA Veronica C-USA Oct. 17, 2013
    I hear you girl. I live in hot hot Houston, and even though the weather is tolerable in fall and winter, my parents insist on driving me everywhere within a mile radius of our house. I can easily walk to the store or multiple eateries around town, but no, its “too far.”
  • McGrane p-usa McGrane p-usa Oct. 17, 2013
    I've lived in the bay area almost my whole life I lived in Michigan for 2 years and I noticed the same thing people in the bay area tend to walk, ride bikes, and use public transit much more than other places. People here in the bay area also have the benefit of using BART (bay area rapid transit) Although that's kinda of a toss up right now due to their possible strike. BART is probably one of the most effective transportation method in our area right now and it help with our corbon footprint a lot in our area.
  • Gabriel Sibol Pineda Gabriel Sibol Pineda Oct. 25, 2013
    Hey, Elana. Just like you, I live in the Bay Area but used to live somewhere else. Before moving to the USA, I lived in both the Philippines and Australia. The Philippines has and seems that it always will be polluted. Not that many people care about the environment there. But, in Australia, the people and te government really try their best to help our world. In the city I lived n, we had a newly implemented public transport service. It wasn't a train, nor a bus, it was a bike system. People were allowed to rent bikes, pick them up from certain stations, and just drop them off at a different one wherever they go. I guess the attitude towards climate chnge just depends on tehe attitude of the people who live in their areas.
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Mary W- USA, Oct. 10, 2013

While researching on how to reduce my carbon footprint, I found out something that I had never thought about before. Groceries have a large impact on your carbon footprint. You should look for products from local manufacturers, farmers, and producers because this means that it traveled less time. The transporting of these products releasing a lot of carbon. You can help increase this cities carbon footprint by promoting local grocery products. My family goes to the grocery store to buy groceries several times a week, and buying local foods can help promote these products! Next time you go to the grocery store, check the labels to see where the products you are buying come from.

http://www.howtoreduceglobalwarming.com/
Mary W- USA
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