Keynote-Environmentally Friendly Cities

Keynote-Environmentally Friendly Cities

Phenomenological Aspects of Civil Engineering (PACE) - an International Congress
Volume 1 - Issue 1 - PACE-2021

Günay Kocasoy


Due to the increase in the population, development of technology, changing the consumption behavior of people and the massive immigration both from the rural areas to cities as well as from the other countries caused the deterioration of the environment extensively. After the World War II, industrialization activities had been continuously performed without taking any precaution for the protection of environment, prevention of pollution and preservation of natural resources. While the new technologies had been developing and the economy of the countries had been growing, all the cities have been suffering from heavy air pollution, water pollution, climate change and mountains of waste-municipal and hazardous–and deforestation. Experiencing the environmental disasters and the indications of the threat for the world and the pressure of the demand of the community especially of the Generation Z, the authorities of the countries started to look for solution for this global problem for the sustainability of the planet. At this combat the authorities should focus not only on one issue, but on many different issues. They have observed that almost 69-70 percent of the world population is living at the cities. It is estimated that the world population will be almost 9.5 billion and 75 per cent of it will be living at cities at 2050. This indicates that cities will be very crowded and both the central and the regional authorities will combat not only with the physical environmental problems, but also with the social-economic-adaptation problems of the immigrants. Authorities of the countries decided to plan and apply some necessary precautions to prepare the cities to be sustainable at future. The terminologies such as “environmentally friendly cities”, “sustainable cities” and “smart cities” are used for these cities. The countries declared their targets for the reduction of pollution at their cities voluntarily. Among the issues such as air quality, water quality, waste, noise, nature and biodiversity, combat with the climate change, sustainable usage of the areas, energy performance, green growth and environmentally friendly innovation, administration and sustainable mobility plan, the authorities have been mostly focusing on the reduction of the carbon emissions. Countries have been declaring their targets for the reduction of carbon emissions for the years 2030 and 2050. The principle “cradle to grave” has been also abandoned and replaced with the principle “from cradle to cradle”. In other words switching from “linear economy” to “circular economy” has been emerged. As an example, the authorities of Lahti – a city with a population of 120 000 at Finland- declared their target as 90 percent reduction of the green gas emissions from the value of the year 1990 and will have neutral carbon at 2050. They are targeting to realize the “zero waste” by the application of circular economy and apply the sustainable transportation by encouraging people to walk, to ride bicycles, to ski and use public transportation, etc. The targets of Lahti are 10 years ahead of the target of Finland and 25 years ahead of EU. Lahti was crowned with the “Europe Green Capital Award”. At the final manuscript criteria and features for the renovation of the cities, plans to be made for the construction of sustainable cities and the commitments made by the eco-friendly cities of the world such as Amsterdam, San Francisco, Reykjavik, Cape Town will be presented in detail.


Carbon reduction, Energy performance, Environmentally friendly cities, Smart cities, Sustainable cities, Cradle to cradle.