Sustainable cities and human settlements

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.

Elsevier,

Encyclopedia of Food Security and Sustainability, Volume 2, 2019, pages 1-7

Advancing SDGs 2, 3 and 11, this chapter gives an overview of how food security, nutrition and sustainability are interrelated.
Elsevier,

Evaluating Water Quality to Prevent Future Disasters, 2019, Pages 1-12

Water-quality disasters occur frequently worldwide. They do not necessarily occur only in underdeveloped world. Detailed water-quality evaluations can help prevent occurrence of some of these disasters. Contributing to SDGs 10 and 11, this chapter discusses our vulnerability to water disasters to help us avoid some of them in the future.
Elsevier,

Encyclopedia of Caves (Third Edition), 2019, Pages 678-685

This book chapter addresses goals 15 and 11 by focusing on how human activities influence the biodiversity of life on land.
Each year the RELX Environmental Challenge is awarded to projects that best demonstrate how they can provide sustainable access to safe water or sanitation. Projects must have clear practical applicability, address identified need and advance related issues such as health, education, or human rights. Applications close on 7 June 2019.
Key Performance Indicators are important instruments, both in defining high-level goals (international or national) and when planning smart energy communities. However, there is often a gap between the high-level goals, and possible and planned measures on the community level. Evaluation of development scenarios against a defined set of indicators and goals can help urban planners and other stakeholders understand the consequences of their strategies. This article presents a scenario calculator designed to link detailed measures with overall climate goals.
This book chapter addresses goals 12, 7, 11 and 15 by looking at the environmental and economic impact of the utilization of biomass resources.
Elsevier, Internet of Things (Netherlands), Volume 5, March 2019
#SmartME has been one of the first initiatives in Italy to realize a Smart City through the use of open technologies. Thanks to the use of low cost sensor-powered devices scattered over the city area, different “smart” services have been deployed having the Stack4Things framework as the common underlying middleware. In this paper, we present the results obtained after 2 years of project highlighting the vertical solutions that have been proposed in different areas ranging from environmental monitoring to parking management.
Elsevier,

Materials Today Sustainability, Volume 3-4, March 2019

The built environment is responsible for large negative ecological impacts due in part to the vast amount of materials used in construction. Concurrently, construction and demolition activities result in vast amounts of materials being buried, burnt, and dumped. It is essential therefore to analyze the impact of building materials acquisition, use, and transformation on the ecosystems people inhabit and rely upon for well-being. Typically, this is examined in terms of material use, energy use, and emission of pollutants including greenhouse gases.

With growing health risks from rising temperatures in the Global South, the lack of essential indoor cooling is increasingly seen as a dimension of energy poverty and human well-being. Air conditioning (AC) is expected to increase significantly with rising incomes, but it is likely that many who need AC will not have it. We estimate the current location and extent of populations potentially exposed to heat stress in the Global South.

Elsevier,

Encyclopedia of Ocean Sciences, Volume 6, 1 January 2019

This book chapter advances SDGs 11 and 12 by discussing the integrated coastal management approach to coastal zone management policy for a sustainable coast.

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