Singapore official: Asian cities can harmonize economic growth and environment

With good management, Asian cities can sustain economic growth and provide a even higher standard of living for their population, said Singapore’s Senior Minister of State for National Development Grace Fu here Wednesday.

Speaking at an event of the World Cities Summit which is held here from Tuesday, she said a key common challenge facing cities in Asia is to pursue economic growth while ensuring environmental and social sustainability.

While economic growth can bring more wealth and resource to cities, she pointed out that the distribution of wealth may be uneven, “economic growth can also widen the income disparity among the population and stress the social fabric that underpins economic and social stability.”

SOURCE: Xinhua – Singapore official: Asian cities can harmonize economic growth and environment_

NYC Gets a Green Roof Kickstart – GreenerBuildings.com

New York City building owners who install vegetation on at least half of their rooftop space may receive up to $100,000 in a one-time property tax credit.

Bill A.11226 passed the state legislature Tuesday, paving the way for building owners to be compensated about $4.50 per square foot of green roof space, or about a quarter of the cost typically associated with a green roof’s materials, labor, installation and design.

A proliferation of green roofs could save America’s most populous city millions of dollars in energy cooling and stormwater management costs, as well as jumpstart the creation of green collar jobs, say proponents of the bil

SOURCE: GreenerBuildings – NYC Gets a Green Roof Kickstart

Biofuels threaten food security and environment

Biofuels threaten food security and environment

Less than two years ago few people knew about biofuels. Today, Indonesians are struggling to cope with the escalating costs of daily essentials, like rice, as the amount of agricultural land being used to produce this new source of energy increases.

A combination of skyrocketing oil prices and the need to find alternatives to climate changing fossil fuels is driving this new biofuel obsession.

Environmentalists are becoming increasingly worried about the adverse impacts this will have on the country’s rapidly diminishing rainforests.

SOURCE: The Jakarta Post – The Journal of Indonesia Today.

Guest column: Don’t expect simple solutions to complexities of flooding – DesMoinesRegister.com | The Des Moines Register

DOUGLAS M. JOHNSTON is chair of the Department of Community and Regional Planning and of the Department of Landscape Architecture at ISU wrote a great article about the Iowa floods*

During and after any catastrophe, many will review the events and ask: Why did it happen and what can be done to prevent it? The ongoing flooding in Iowa is no exception.

…….we often fail to remember is that water flows downhill. It comes from somewhere, and it goes somewhere. Anything we do that affects the flow of water will have an impact further downstream. Prairie and forest are good at capturing rainfall. Tile-drained farm fields, roofs, roads, and parking lots are less so. With fewer wetlands, prairies and forest to slow runoff or prevent it, the same rain event will send more water downstream faster.

Read more @ the SOURCE: DesMoinesRegister.com – Guest column: Don’t expect simple solutions to complexities of flooding – The Des Moines Register.

EU Commission discusses soil degradation and climate change – Jerusalem Post

The European Commission last week hosted a high-level conference on the relationship between soil and climate change, and the role of soil management in climate change mitigation and adaptation. Organic matter plays a fundamental role supporting soil fertility, retaining water, sustaining biodiversity and regulating the global carbon cycle. But organic matter is in decline, and the conference heard how large amounts of carbon have been lost to the atmosphere in recent years. The Commission states it is convinced of the need to act at EU level to protect soil

SOURCE: Jerusalem Post EU Commission discusses soil degradation and climate change .

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