BBC NEWS | | Urbanisation

BBC NEWS | | Urbanisation

What a terrific data visualisation! Shows the growth of “super cities” (urban areas) from 1955 through forcast 2015. If one were looking for causes of global warming and other environmental issues, one wouldn’t be too far the root cause than seeing the evidence here.

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2 Responses to BBC NEWS | | Urbanisation

  1. RandNo says:

    Rob,One could argue that “supercities” are actually more energy efficient than some other forms. The high concentration of people allows a number of economies of scale in infrastructure and transportation. I heard recently that the per capita energy use in a city like Tokyo is less than it is in cities which are not so dense. Sorry I don’t have details on that, but I hear a lot of things on the radio while driving on my 25 mile commute.

  2. Rob says:

    Rando,Thanks for your comment and thanks for reading. [how did you find this blog? Just curious.] No point “arguing” that point since I think you are right. This covered most recently in last week’s New Scientist Magazine http://www.newscientist.com/contents/issue/2556.html. While energy efficiency clearly increases with greater urbanisation, I think there are two other factors which have to be considered:1. A very big number of people (and growing number) multiplied by a reducing number representing energy efficience still nets increased energy usage.2. Megacities are simply harder to govern, and so the risk of having a non functional city increases. This sort of seems to be happening also. Coincidently this was also touched on at Foreign Policy Magazine http://www.foreignpolicy.com/story/cms.php?story_id=3504 “In 1995, the world had just 14 cities with a population of 10 million or more. A decade from now, there will 21. The problems that plague these megacities – pollution, crime, natural disasters – are as massive as their swelling populations. FP exposes the crises that could topple six of the world’s megacities.”Some cities work. Others don’t. If we could only figure out why and be able to do something consistently.

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