Total Posts:10|Showing Posts:1-10
Jump to topic:

Are Sustainable Cities Possible?

ZeldaMafia
Posts: 56
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/7/2016 6:22:50 PM
Posted: 7 months ago
Hey people!

I recently had a debate with a member on this topic that went pretty well. But I couldn't really come across any new ideas or thoughts.

I would just like to hear your arguments and statements on this cause, whether pro or con.

Just to start off, Sustainability is "the endurance of systems and processes. The organizing principle for sustainability is sustainable development, which includes the four interconnected domains: ecology, economics, politics and culture.'

So by definition, A "sustainable city, or eco-city (also "ecocity") is a city designed with consideration of environmental impact, inhabited by people dedicated to minimization of required inputs of energy, water and food, and waste output of heat, air pollution - CO2, methane, and water pollution. "

Thankyou.
Diqiucun_Cunmin
Posts: 2,710
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/7/2016 6:39:09 PM
Posted: 7 months ago
At 5/7/2016 6:22:50 PM, ZeldaMafia wrote:
Hey people!

I recently had a debate with a member on this topic that went pretty well. But I couldn't really come across any new ideas or thoughts.

I would just like to hear your arguments and statements on this cause, whether pro or con.

Just to start off, Sustainability is "the endurance of systems and processes. The organizing principle for sustainability is sustainable development, which includes the four interconnected domains: ecology, economics, politics and culture.'

So by definition, A "sustainable city, or eco-city (also "ecocity") is a city designed with consideration of environmental impact, inhabited by people dedicated to minimization of required inputs of energy, water and food, and waste output of heat, air pollution - CO2, methane, and water pollution. "

Thankyou.
Sustainable city isn't just about minimising environmental impact. If you enforce drastic measures to reduce the population, the city can be environmentally sustainable and yet economically unsustainable.

IMO the best measure of sustainability is whether the city, if it continues going down its current path, will at least maintain the current quality of life. If, in a century's time, your city will be poorer, more polluted or more socially unstable than before, then your city is unsustainable.

So, before we answer the question of whether sustainable cities are possible, maybe we need to answer the question of whether it's possible to predict, to a reasonable accuracy, the future quality of life in a city by looking at current data and trends...
The thing is, I hate relativism. I hate relativism more than I hate everything else, excepting, maybe, fibreglass powerboats... What it overlooks, to put it briefly and crudely, is the fixed structure of human nature. - Jerry Fodor

Don't be a stat cynic:
http://www.debate.org...

Response to conservative views on deforestation:
http://www.debate.org...

Topics I'd like to debate (not debating ATM): http://tinyurl.com...
keithprosser
Posts: 2,041
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/8/2016 4:52:03 AM
Posted: 7 months ago
No city is sustainable unless there is a lot of 'non-city' to provide it with things like food! I don't think the question makes a lot of sense as it stands because surely we have to look at the wider picture to see if an entire industrial/agricultural consumer/producer system is workable.
Because cities are concentrations of people and industry they will be net-importers of things like food and energy. Obviously cities can be more or less efficient, but they can never be 'sustainable' in isolation, only as part of a larger infrastructure.
Skynet
Posts: 674
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/8/2016 5:07:33 AM
Posted: 7 months ago
At 5/7/2016 6:22:50 PM, ZeldaMafia wrote:
Hey people!

I recently had a debate with a member on this topic that went pretty well. But I couldn't really come across any new ideas or thoughts.

I would just like to hear your arguments and statements on this cause, whether pro or con.

Just to start off, Sustainability is "the endurance of systems and processes. The organizing principle for sustainability is sustainable development, which includes the four interconnected domains: ecology, economics, politics and culture.'

So by definition, A "sustainable city, or eco-city (also "ecocity") is a city designed with consideration of environmental impact, inhabited by people dedicated to minimization of required inputs of energy, water and food, and waste output of heat, air pollution - CO2, methane, and water pollution. "

Thankyou.

We can look at history. Correct me if I'm wrong, but it feels like this question is framed with the assumption that cities just popped into existence 150 years ago and they are an experiment everyone is biting their nails waiting to see if they can work. Cities have been continuously around for several thousand years. Technology and methods will change as needed, and alternative resources will be found or made to meet their needs and wants. So I think any city can be sustainable as long as nothing drastic happens, and usually without cutting back on the quality of life by austere measures, like limiting fuel consumption. Think of London in 800 AD vs. now. There's no comparison when you look at quality of life, and population is larger and uses more resources.
One perk to being a dad is you get to watch cartoons again without explaining yourself.
Axonly
Posts: 1,802
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
6/15/2016 3:53:35 AM
Posted: 5 months ago
At 5/7/2016 6:22:50 PM, ZeldaMafia wrote:
Hey people!

I recently had a debate with a member on this topic that went pretty well. But I couldn't really come across any new ideas or thoughts.

I would just like to hear your arguments and statements on this cause, whether pro or con.

Just to start off, Sustainability is "the endurance of systems and processes. The organizing principle for sustainability is sustainable development, which includes the four interconnected domains: ecology, economics, politics and culture.'

So by definition, A "sustainable city, or eco-city (also "ecocity") is a city designed with consideration of environmental impact, inhabited by people dedicated to minimization of required inputs of energy, water and food, and waste output of heat, air pollution - CO2, methane, and water pollution. "

Thankyou.

In terms of electricity, I think it is definitely possible.
Meh!
Akhenaten
Posts: 854
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
6/19/2016 7:22:42 AM
Posted: 5 months ago
Cities are not natural, therefore, they are not sustainable. Only natural things are sustainable. Politicians use the word 'sustainable' as a political tool which has nothing to do with the environment. When a politician talks about sustainability, they are really talking about how to enforce communism and the secretive abuse of human rights.
Axonly
Posts: 1,802
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
6/23/2016 12:36:26 PM
Posted: 5 months ago
At 6/19/2016 7:22:42 AM, Akhenaten wrote:
Cities are not natural, therefore, they are not sustainable. Only natural things are sustainable. Politicians use the word 'sustainable' as a political tool which has nothing to do with the environment. When a politician talks about sustainability, they are really talking about how to enforce communism and the secretive abuse of human rights.

Computers aren't natural, so don't use it because you're causing communism!
Meh!
Akhenaten
Posts: 854
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
6/23/2016 4:31:47 PM
Posted: 5 months ago
At 6/23/2016 12:36:26 PM, Axonly wrote:
At 6/19/2016 7:22:42 AM, Akhenaten wrote:
Cities are not natural, therefore, they are not sustainable. Only natural things are sustainable. Politicians use the word 'sustainable' as a political tool which has nothing to do with the environment. When a politician talks about sustainability, they are really talking about how to enforce communism and the secretive abuse of human rights.

Computers aren't natural, so don't use it because you're causing communism!

Communist love mental confusion, therefore, you must be a communist. lol
RoyLatham
Posts: 4,488
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
6/24/2016 3:59:35 PM
Posted: 5 months ago
The question of "sustainable cities" is an artificial one. We can start by agreeing that for some n and r, a population of n people can be sustained in some radius r on the surface of the earth. We could also suppose that a giant floating space ship of dimension r could sustain n people. Earth is equivalent to a space ship of radius 4000 miles, with a population of 7.25 billion. The question is then what n and r comprise a city? That's quite subjective, and depends upon the state of technology.

Humans dissipate about 300 watts each, some being dimmer than others. If technology is available to do all the conversions and recycling in a compact space, the limit should be the space needed to generated 300 watts per person. In space, solar energy is about 7 watts per square meter, so about 40 square meters per person is about the minimum for solar-powered sustainability. With currently available technology, it would be a lot more.