Two countries will lead the world in eco-cities: China and Britain.” The words of British Prime Minister Gordon Brown lingered in the cold Shanghai winter air long after he had given tacit approval to the Dongtan ‘eco-city’, set to be constructed on the formerly preserved wetlands of Chongming Island, near Shanghai. Dongtan was initiated by Shanghai Industrial Investment Corp, which contracted British engineering firm Arup to work on the development.
The heavily hyped, and controversial, development is being marketed as the world’s first “self-sustaining eco city” – designed to house up to 90,000 people by 2010, with 90 per cent of all waste to be recovered, recycled or reused. Last November, it was recognised as one of the “most innovative and outstanding buildings in Asia” by the MIPIM Asia Awards in Hong Kong.
However, speculation persists about the yet-to-be-constructed Dongtan’s actual ecological credentials, and rumours have surfaced that its near-neighbour may be a Disneyland theme park (reported here).
China Business News and Business in China – BizChinaUpdate.
Masdar, Abu Dhabi’s initiative for renewable and alternative energy and clean technology, and Hydrogen Energy, the joint venture between BP Alternative Energy and Rio Tinto, announced the signing of an agreement to work together on the front-end engineering design of an industrial-scale hydrogen-fired power generation project with capture of the carbon dioxide (CO2), which would then be available for transportation and storage.
Masdar and Hydrogen Energy plan clean energy plant in Abu Dhabi | ADFEC.
The jury has spoken – and it wants San Francisco in 2108 to be a place where forests of towers grow algae as well as house people, and where geothermal steam baths sprout atop Twin Peaks.
Those elements are part of the proposal by IwamotoScott Architecture, selected Sunday as the winner of an eight-team competition to imagine how San Francisco could change during a century likely to be defined by global warming and the search for new forms of energy.
In addition to a $10,000 prize, architects Lisa Iwamoto and Craig Scott received the satisfaction of triumphing over rivals who offered such visions as an offshore island housing 250,000 people and 40-story towers used for commercial farming.
Read more at SFGate.com Local architects offer their visions of S.F. 100 years hence in a competition – John King
Environmentalists, urban planners and experts at a seminar in the city said architecture and life are closely related with each other. While planning a city and designing any architecture, all should keep in mind the welfare of the people, socio-cultural environment and the cause of humanity.
People are becoming urbanised, which is making human life mechnaised, self-centred and detached from each other. For this reason, different social problems have been created in city life, which has influenced the urban lifestyle, they said.
This was said at the seminar on ‘Pro-People Urban Design: Learning from Copenhagen’ organised by WBB Trust at CIRDAP Auditorium yesterday.
Prof Dr Jan Gail, architect from Copenhagen of Denmark, presented a key-note paper, while Syed Mahbubul Alam Tahin, Programme Manager of WBB Trust, moderated the session.
The New Nation – Internet Edition.
The owners of San Francisco’s Parkmerced want to add nearly 5,700 homes to the World War II-era rental housing complex, an ambitious renovation that could rank as one of the greenest in the country.
Over 20 years, the developer says, the minimum $1.2 billion project would take the 115-acre property off the power grid by employing wind turbines and other low-emission energy sources, slash water consumption through improved plumbing and recycling, and halve tenants’ automobile use by, among other things, adding public transportation options.
“I almost consider it a moral obligation in a project of this size to be responsible and do whatever we can do to help confront the problem of climate change,” said Craig Hartman, lead architect on the project and partner with Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP.
Read more at Grand green vision for S.F.’s Parkmerced – SFGate.com – James Temple
Prime Minister Gordon Brown has promised China £50 million in aid for “green” technology as he seeks to switch the focus of his visit to the country to climate change.
The Prime Minister has promised at least that sum will be handed out to support investment in energy efficiency, so-called “clean coal” and carbon capture in the booming Chinese economy.
The deal was done on the first day of Mr Brown’s three-day visit to China, where the environment will now increasingly take centre stage.
The Prime Minister will visit the environmentally friendly Taiyang Gong Power Station on the outskirts of Beijing which recycles its own heat sources to supply hot water and other benefits to the community.
Mr Brown will later fly on to Shanghai to see progress being made in the Dongtan “eco-city” with lessons being learned for the Thames Gateway project currently under development in London’s suburbs.
Brown offers China green incentive | UK Latest | Guardian Unlimited.
An investment company bought the 181ha former Air Services Australia site at Cranebrook in 2004, intending to subdivide and develop it for 1800 new residents.
Since then, a number of rare and threatened plants and animals have been found on the land.
The state environment department specifically recommended in 2006 that the entire site be protected.
A December study of the land identified nine threatened species and three endangered ecological communities across the rugged bushland, including 30 endangered flowering nodding geebung shrubs, of which just a few thousand remain in the wild _ and only in Western Sydney.
Rare plant halts development | The Daily Telegraph.