The United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 11 aims to "Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient, and sustainable." This goal acknowledges the growing importance of urban areas, as it's projected that by 2050, nearly 70% of the world's population will live in cities. Consequently, cities bear significant implications for sustainability, economic growth, and societal wellbeing.
Inclusivity is a key feature of sustainable cities. This refers to equitable access to opportunities, public services, and amenities, regardless of a person's background or circumstances. It implies the availability of affordable and adequate housing, thus addressing issues of homelessness and substandard living conditions.
Safety in cities means ensuring urban environments that protect their inhabitants from both physical harm and psychological distress. This involves addressing crime rates, traffic accidents, and potential hazards from poor infrastructure, while also considering the impacts of noise, pollution, and overcrowdedness on mental health.
Resilience is another important aspect, particularly in the face of climate change. Resilient cities can withstand and quickly recover from shocks such as natural disasters or economic crises. This involves aspects such as resilient infrastructure, disaster risk reduction strategies, and adaptive capacities at the community level.
Sustainability, finally, requires cities to function in a way that doesn't compromise future generations' ability to meet their own needs. This includes sustainable urban planning to reduce environmental impact, promote energy efficiency, and conserve resources. It also considers the importance of green spaces for biodiversity and the wellbeing of urban residents.
SDG 11 is interconnected with many other SDGs. For example, sustainable urban transport systems contribute to SDG 13 (Climate Action) by reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Meanwhile, ensuring access to green and public spaces supports SDG 3 (Good Health and Well-being).
Achieving sustainable cities and human settlements requires cooperation and participation from various stakeholders, including government authorities, urban planners, businesses, and citizens. Through their collective efforts, cities can be transformed into hubs of sustainability, resilience, and inclusivity, contributing significantly towards the realization of the SDGs.
COP26 is the 2021 United Nations annual climate change conference. COP stands for Conference of the Parties. Parties are the signatories of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) - a treaty agreed in 1994 which has 197 Parties (196 countries and the EU). The 2021 conference, hosted by the UK, together with our partners Italy, in Glasgow, will be the 26th meeting of the Parties, which is why it's called COP26.
Building and Environment, Volume 203, October 2021
Monitoring the thermal comfort of building occupants is crucial for ensuring sustainable and efficient energy consumption in residential buildings. Existing studies have addressed the monitoring of thermal comfort through questionnaires and activities involving occupants. However, few studies have considered disabled people in the monitoring of thermal comfort, despite the potential for impairments to present thermal requirements that are significantly different from those of an occupant without a disability.
Physics and Chemistry of the Earth, Volume 123, October 2021
16th October 2021
World Food Day is organized every year on October 16 to bring awareness to how our changing planet affects food production and distribution. In support of this year's theme "Our actions are our future- Better production, better nutrition, a better environment and a better life", Elsevier presents a collection of over 70 pieces of curated and freely available books and journal content.
One Earth, Volume 4, 22 October 2021
Habitat International, Volume 115, September 2021
Tracking progress toward the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) requires monitoring of various social-ecological indicators over space and time, including the ratio of land consumption rate to population growth rate (LCRPGR), an indicator of land-use efficiency (SDG 11.3.1). In this study, we analyzed state-of-the-art Earth observation data (1975–2015) to address three key questions. First, how has the LCRPGR varied over space and time? Second, how is built-up expansion related to population increase across regions?
Applications in Energy and Combustion Science, Volume 7, September 2021
Natural Resources Conservation and Advances for Sustainability, 2022, Pages 493-501