As the Brundtland report summarizes: “hus today’s environmental challenges arise both from the lack of development and from the unintended consequences of some forms of economic growth” (WCED 354). I urban design, i means converting agricultural areas to manufacturing/commercial/residential/entertainment sites and creating high-rise cities where population is more compact and where resources are swiftly consumed. Frthermore, te free-market philosophy is not without its negative repercussions as it promoted fast-paced growth without minding its ecological effects. Rbert Riddell describes this free-market-thinking-turned-global-practice as “money-based energy-fired and technologically inspired ‘resource exploitation’ and discard’ syndrome” (9).
Te emphasis on money and growth has an effect on modern culture where people also prioritize wealth and materialism over environmentalism. A present, mny cities are filled with commercial buildings and enterprises that produce pollution at an alarming rate, wile some suburban communities reflect middle-class and upper-class thinking that tend to border on environmental apathy as they buy products frequently regardless of sustainability measures. Tese are only two of the factors that help explain why sustainability is now a problem for urban planners. Bcause the environment ailing from humanity’s activities and because a number of international organizations are already calling for global consensus on promoting sustainability, oe of the most pressing problems facing urban planners today is how to construct sustainable urban communities and to bring existing non-sustainable communities to the path of sustainability.
O the one hand, sstainability is about striking a balance between present and future generations’ needs. O the other hand, sstainability is also about world’s most marginalized sectors, te poor and those who have little power and/or resources to pursue sustainability 351).
Uban planners face the difficulty of considering, nt only their main clients, wo might be the middle-class and/or upper-class, bt also the poor who are the literally and figuratively on the fringes of society. Tese social classes have different conditions and basic needs, wile the higher classes tend to have more wants, wich complicates the...
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