Urban infrastructure for long-term climate change response

The New Zealand Society for Sustainability Engineering and Science
Publication Type:
Conference Proceeding
Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on Sustainability Engineering and Science, 2009, pp. 1 - 10
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In the context of climate change response, sustainable urban infrastructure needs to deliver deep cuts in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, of the order of 80-90% by 2050. This paper examines how various GHG reduction strategies applied to urban infrastructure open up or foreclose the potential for deeper cuts in the long-term. It uses case studies of a major precinct-scale urban redevelopment site and a city-wide planning process in Sydney to illustrate how developers and planners are balancing short to medium-term GHG reduction actions with the need to achieve much deeper cuts in the long-term. There is a particular focus on the implications of strategies that prioritise gas-fired cogeneration. The paper argues that too little attention is being given to the long-term implications of short-term GHG reduction strategies and proposes infrastructure design principles for long-term GHG reduction.
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