China plans to build nearly 300 new eco-cities

September 5, 2017 by  
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China broke ground on a 40,000-tree-filled Forest City earlier this summer – but apparently one isn’t enough. The country, infamous for their environmental pollution , plans to construct 285 eco-cities , according to Forbes. But what exactly an eco-city constitutes – and the standards to which it will be held – is still in question. Individual buildings can be held up against LEED standards, or even China’s Three Star system. But Forbes pointed out there’s no such criteria for entire cities . The publication quoted Austin Williams, Jiaotong-Liverpool University professor and author of a book on eco-cities, who said, “There is no definition of an eco-city, which makes them incredibly easy to invent.” Related: China plans its first “Forest City” to fight air pollution The country has urbanized more rapidly than any other country in history. In the last 30 years, more people than America’s entire population have moved to urban areas of China. The country has prioritized development over the environment in many cases, with dangerous air quality found in 90 percent of cities. According to Forbes, as the public has become educated about the pollution, environmental conditions in the country could pose the largest destabilizing force to the Communist Party. Will China’s eco-cities recycle , be powered by renewable energy , produce less carbon emissions , and be built with energy-efficient structures – a few hallmarks we might expect in an eco-city? Williams said, “In the West, eco-cities are supposed to save the world; in China they are simply meant to provide a decent quality of urban environment…China’s eco-cities are simply intended to be much-needed urban improvements and infrastructural development with an eco-prefix.” 80 percent of prefectural-level cities are estimated to have at least one eco-city in the works. One estimate suggests in the near future, more than 50 percent of new urban developments in China will be labeled green, smart, low-carbon, or eco. It remains to be seen whether these eco-cities will genuinely benefit China’s environment – and the people who live in them. Via Forbes Images via Stefano Boeri Architetti

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China plans to build nearly 300 new eco-cities

NASA releases startling new images showing 30 years of change on Earth

January 25, 2017 by  
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We hear plenty of news about melting glaciers , droughts and massive industrial projects that are dramatically changing the face of the planet, but it’s still easy for those things to remain abstract concepts because the scale is so large. (Not to mention the new administration’s attempts to wipe out all mention of climate change .) But NASA remains resolute in its efforts to communicate the truth, recently releasing its “Images of Change” series, a collection of before and after images that show just how much and how fast certain locations on Earth have changed over the past 30 years. As Forbes columnist, Trevor Nace notes, “(t)he series shines light on how rapidly our planet has changed in the recent decades due largely to urbanization and climate change. The series allows for clear and apparent contrast of environmental systems over the past decades. Some processes are unlinked to human influence such as island building but many are affected to some degree by human population growth and pollution.” The series features 120 images from around the world, and scale of the changes that can actually be seen in the images today, from how they were just 30 years ago is almost unfathomable in some cases. And some of the images are pretty startling on their own. Related: Scientists warn rapidly melting glacier in West Antarctica cold cause serious global havoc This one of an early ice melt in Greenland is one that stands well on its own. According to NASA , “Meltwater streams, rivers and lakes form in the surface of the Greenland Ice Sheet every spring or early summer, but melting began exceptionally early in 2016. Melting encourages further melting when ponds of meltwater develop, since they darken the surface and absorb more sunlight than ice does. Surface melt contributes to sea-level rise when the water runs off into the ocean and when it flows through crevasses to the base of a glacier and temporarily speeds up the ice flow.” Check NASA’s great interactive website that hosts the rest of this cool collection of Earth images. Via Forbes and NASA Images via NASA

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NASA releases startling new images showing 30 years of change on Earth

The Atlanta BeltLine is a Smart, Ambitious 6,000 Acre Public Transportation Network by Perkins + Will

October 5, 2012 by  
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Read the rest of The Atlanta BeltLine is a Smart, Ambitious 6,000 Acre Public Transportation Network by Perkins + Will Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Atlanta , Atlanta BeltLine , georgia , landscape , perkins + will , revitalization , transit , Urban design , urban park , Urbanization

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Shade & Shelter is a Lightweight Flexible Dwelling That Responds To Its Desert Environment

October 5, 2012 by  
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Read the rest of Shade & Shelter is a Lightweight Flexible Dwelling That Responds To Its Desert Environment Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “sustainable architecture” , eco design , green architecture , Green Building , green design , lightweight shelter , Ohad Lustgarten , pavilion , shade & shelter , shade and shelter , shelter , student project , sun protection , Sustainable Building , sustainable design , temporary dwelling , temporary pavilion , temporary shelter , wind protection

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Shade & Shelter is a Lightweight Flexible Dwelling That Responds To Its Desert Environment

The Heartfollowers Are Building a Solar Dome-Covered Cob House in the Far Reaches of Norway

October 5, 2012 by  
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Read the rest of The Heartfollowers Are Building a Solar Dome-Covered Cob House in the Far Reaches of Norway Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “natural materials” , cob house , eco design , green design , Heartfollowers , natural ventilation , norway , permaculture , solar dome , sustainable design , wastewater treatment

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The Heartfollowers Are Building a Solar Dome-Covered Cob House in the Far Reaches of Norway

Guerrilla Knitters Invade the Streets of London

March 26, 2010 by  
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All images from Knit the City We have heard of guerrilla gardeners , planting gardens in public spaces under the cover of night.

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Guerrilla Knitters Invade the Streets of London

Chicken vs Egg: Does Suburban Sprawl Represent the Free Market or Over-Regulation? Neither.

March 12, 2010 by  
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Postwar suburban sprawl, courtesy of George Bailey and his Savings and Loan A lot of the Libertarian types think that those of us promoting higher densities and urban life are trying to limit freedom of choice. Joe Mysak wrote in Bloomberg about us: The notion appeals especially to people who like to think they’ll be in charge after the revolution.

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Chicken vs Egg: Does Suburban Sprawl Represent the Free Market or Over-Regulation? Neither.

Infographic: "How Cars are Killing Us Around the World"

March 12, 2010 by  
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Image: Infrastructurist Risk assessment is hard. We humans are hard-wired with many cognitive biases that can often distort our perception of reality and make us fear the wrong things. For example, on average, people will be more afraid of something with which they are unfamiliar compared to something that they see every day

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Infographic: "How Cars are Killing Us Around the World"

Hollywood Donates Big to Rescue an Icon, Stars Flaunt Green Fashion at the Oscars, and More

March 12, 2010 by  
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Photo via Sörn @ flickr On Thursday, the Trust for Public Land released a roster of Hollywood A-listers and companies–including Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson, the Walt Disney Company, the LucasFilm Foundation, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Steven Spielberg, Warner Bros., Fox, Sony, NBC Universal, and Time Warner–who have collectively donated more than $3 million to save one iconic piece of land: Cahuenga Peak …. Read the full story on TreeHugger

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Urbanization & Export-led Agriculture Now Main Causes of Deforestation

February 11, 2010 by  
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Indonesia was listed as a hot spot of this sort of deforestation. Jakarta skyline, photo: flydime via flickr.

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