Nov 27, 15

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China's Urban Low Carbon Future in Shanghai

by Warren Karlenzig China Pavilion, 2010 Shanghai World Expo (Copyright Flickr photographer: penphoto) The Shanghai Expo officially closed yesterday with pomp, circumstance, and a confirmation of the city as the planet's primary hope for a low-carbon future. "Eco-friendly development and dissemination of renewable energy sources and new materials will influence the way we live and will lead the course of industrial development in the future," said China's Premier Wen Jiabao to the closing...


Next-Generation Biennials

by Kristi van Riet I just got back from Oslo where their Architecture Triennalle has opened. I participated in its main conference, Man Made Tomorrow and will report on that event soon. But ahead of the conference, Bjarne Ringstad, curator of the Triennalle, asked me to reflect on how the role of such set-piece events might evolve to match the new challenges design is facing. Here is what I sent him: We are facing an array of ‘wicked problems’ that are simultaneously complex,...


Design Like You Give a Damn + Preservation and Climate Change

It looks like New York City is the place to be come October 15 and 16. Two very interesting conferences are happening: I. Design Like You Give a Damn: LIVE! You have world changing ideas. Learn how to build them. Architecture for Humanity is organizing this two-day showcase of innovative design and one-on-one workshops at the Center for Architecture in New York City. According to the event website, the intention of the event is to help architects learn skills they didn't get taught in...


Thrivability, Food Forests, and Recycling the City

Looking back one, two and five years ago today on Worldchanging: 2009 Worldchanging Interview: Jean Russell on Thrivability Jon Lebkowsky interviews Jean Russell about her idea for replacing "sustainability" with "thrivability"... 2009 Food From Forests David Foley writes about Food Forests, which he argues are one important way of winning the great wager through learning to tend the Earth like a garden now... 2005 Recycling the City Jamais Cascio explores what to do with city waste,...


To Protect, Renew, and Re-Tool: An Interview with Kristina Hill on Managing the Effects of Climate Change

Kristina Hill, PhD, Affiliate ASLA, is Chair of the Landscape Architecture department at the University of Virginia. Recently, the American Society of Landscape Architects interviewed her about how best to manage the effects of climate change, especially in designing cities. The Dirt has published the lengthy interview online; here's an excerpt from the first of seven questions in which Hill says that "to protect, renew, and re-tool" are our best bets: At a recent conference on designing...


When a Billion Chinese Jump: An Interview with Author Jonathan Watts

As the Beijing-based Asia Environment Correspondent for The Guardian, Jonathan Watts has reported on environmental issues in China for several years. His new book, "When a Billion Chinese Jump," is a travelogue that tells the story of China's breakneck development and its consequences, from melting glaciers in Xinjiang and cancer villages in Henan, to dam projects in Sichuan and skyscrapers in Shanghai. Here, he talks to Sam Geall about its economic and cultural implications. Sam Geall: The...


TED Global 2010: Jason Clay and a Sustainable Future through Corporate Collusion

WWF’s Jason Clay starts his tale of doing more with less with a story about his own childhood, growing up very poor on a farm in Missouri. When a scholarship allowed him to get out and go to school, he studied agriculture and anthropology. This eventually led him to working in a refugee camp in Sudan – “If you get a PhD and decide not to teach, you don’t necessarily end up in a refugee camp – you could always drive a taxi in New York.” Using the techniques he’d learned as an...


TED Global 2010: Johan Rockström and Resilience

Johan Rockstrom with SP Wani during a field visit at ICRISAT-Patancheru. (photo credit) Ecologist Johan Rockström begins by reminding us modern humans have just experienced “10,000 years of grace,” an interglacial period capable of supporting human development. He tells us we’re currently putting the planet into a “quadruple squeeze” through pressures of human growth and inequality (80% of climate impact from 20% of people), climate change (whether we end up at 350/450/550ppm of...


Policy and Place, Water for the BoP, and Cleaning Up Ghostnets

Looking back one, two and five years ago today on Worldchanging: 2009 Needed: Leadership From Architects and Designers Julia Levitt encourages architects to lead cities toward greater sustainability at the policy making level. She says, "We urgently need people to re-imagine their cities in very directly political ways, and no one else is as prepared for that job as the talented few who've been trained to understand form and space and place." This article stimulated some good conversation in...


Solar Power, Future Cities, and Green Skyscrapers

Looking back one, two and five years ago today (give or take) on Worldchanging: 2009 The Secret to Low-Water-Use, High-Efficiency Concentrating Solar Power Concentrating solar thermal power plants (“CSP”) have been identified a number of times in Climate Progress as a core climate solution due to their almost unique potential to replace coal. One of the concerns often cited about CSP is water consumption. In the desert areas where CSP will thrive, the consumption of large amounts of...

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