The Earth Institute is grateful to its many partners for their important role in the effort to develop the science and solutions necessary for sustainable development. Please visit the interactive digital 2013 Annual Report to read more about how we are forging partnerships across disciplines and sectors to advance the global effort to guide our planet onto a path toward sustainability.
No, not that kind of trashy – we’re talking here about what New York City neighborhoods produce the most municipal solid waste per person.
Despite having been regarded as a series of “externalities” by conventional systems of economic thinking, our natural environment is not merely a backdrop to human activities, but is the very base upon which all human systems are built. This reality is certainly not new to sustainability science, but it is easy to lose sight of our close dependence on natural ecosystems when it comes to living in urban environments. Amidst the concrete, buildings, and tightly managed green spaces, it can be hard to see the natural environment — the nature – that exists in cities when we’re so used to “nature” being something you find in national parks and preserves, fenced off and isolated from the places we live and work.
Where does London get its fruit? Where are the “food swamps” in Los Angeles? Where do tomatoes from Spain wind up? Where are the composters in New York City? For lovers of geography, and of the sociology of food, “Food: an atlas” offers lots of informative and curious distraction.
The jury is still out on how tropical storms will change as climate warms, but rising sea levels will almost certainly place more coastal property at risk of flooding, says a team of scientists writing in the journal Nature.
When Hurricane Sandy hit last October, the vulnerabilities of the New York/New Jersey region to extreme weather were made all too clear. The Rebuild by Design challenge was launched to find the most innovative ways to make the region more resilient and sustainable.
With the end of Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s tenure drawing near, many are speculating which of his policies will survive the next administration. New York City’s comprehensive environmental plan, PlaNYC 2030: A Greener, Greater New York, has been championed politically by Bloomberg, but is grounded in science and data, and performance management. It has demonstrated progress, achieving multiple goals for the city, making it appealing to any administration. On Oct. 22, we hosted an event where we posed the question “Is Sustainability Sustainable?” to our guest experts, Rit Aggarwala and Sergej Mahnovski. The answer is simply that it needs to be.
To combat urban air pollution and traffic problems, some propose congestion pricing as a cost-effective policy to reduce pollution and improve productivity through improved travel speeds. Cities in China could implement this policy and ameliorate some of the negative effects of congestion-caused pollution. So why is congestion pricing dead on arrival in China?
Improved satellite technology can enable more detailed and precise analysis of urban development patterns over time.
Over the next 18 years, New York City’s 2010 Green Infrastructure Plan will spend $2.4 billion on green infrastructure— green roofs, tree plantings, and increased vegetation— to combat coastal pollution. But how does green infrastructure work and how effective is it really?