Efficient energy supply and economical energy consumption are set to become central questions of the 21st century. Mankind’s energy consumption rises continuously and presents enormous challenges for climate protection and energy supply. Urban agglomerations and megacities in developing and newly industrializing countries are important arenas for energy consumption. Although cities cover only 2% of the earth’s surface, they are responsible for three-quarter of global energy consumption as well as approximately 85% of the global greenhouse gas emissions.
The underlying trend to urbanization and to the further expansion of megacities is unbroken. Against this background, megacities offer strategic approaches for efficient energy use and climate change mitigation. One the one hand, the agglomeration of people, material flows and residential districts in megacities allows to reduce the consumption of resources and energy, because more people can be supplied using the same amount of transport, energy and space by the use of modern planning and service concepts.. On the other hand, the complexity of infrastructure and urban industries enables an accelerated dissemination of innovations. Therefore, in particular future megacities face fundamental decisions on the direction to take. They may still have a choice between different pathways of development. Decisions of planning and investment of today will determine the energy efficiency, the economic productivity, the social quality of life and the ecological capacity of the expanding megacities for many years.
Issues of adaptation to climate change are also of fundamental importance for emerging megacities. Weather extremes like floods, storm floods, droughts and heat waves together with water scarcity are already today serious problems for cities especially in developing and newly industrializing countries. For the future they have to intensify their efforts to adapt to climate change, in order to minimize the damage and control the risks of climate change. Appropriate technologies could help!
AT- Association, the technical expert partner of the “empowering people. Award”, supported the project “Solid Waste Management in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia”. This is a research and demonstration project of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) under the research program "Research for the Sustainable Development of Megacities of Tomorrow - Energy- and Climate-Efficient Structures in Urban Growth Centres" of the Federal Republic of Germany.
Information on the project “Future Megacities” here.
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