Can the Middle East ever be green?

When you talk green in the Dubai, it’s can be assumed you mean golf courses. Conservation and ecotourism are not common parlance in the United Arab Emirates.

In four days at the Arabian Travel Market this week, I heard a slew of figures and superlatives to illustrate the UAE’s headlong goldrush to embrace tourism.

There’s the world’s tallest building still rising in Dubai, the biggest Guggenheim to open in Abu Dhabi and the world’s biggest stable of theme parks planned back in Dubai.
Green Spaces: April’s nominations

But only very rarely did sustainability arise – unless it concerned oil. Dubai’s runs out in 2016, hence the stridency to diversify now and consider the ramifications later.

At a “Going Green” seminar, David can der Meulen of Arabian Traveller magazine pointed out that US hotel chains operating in the Middle East, like Fairmont, have inhouse policies to cover energy efficient lightbulbs, paper and water usage. None of the UAE hotel companies have, he said.

Read more @ the SOURCE: Times Online – Can the Middle East ever be green?

Destroying a neighborhood to save a city – The Boston Globe

FIFTY YEARS ago this spring the roar of heavy machinery echoed down the narrow streets of Boston’s old West End as bulldozers and cranes with wrecking balls began executing a desperate plan to revitalize the city by razing one of its oldest neighborhoods.
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Thousands of poor and elderly residents were evicted, many from the only home they had ever known. Veiled promises of relocation to comparable housing never materialized, and the West Enders were scattered throughout the metropolitan area. For many, their standard of living was severely reduced and they never recovered.

Destroying a neighborhood to save a city – The Boston Globe.

Winners of 2010 Design Competition to Be Announced

The City of Cape Town will on Thursday announce the winners of its 2010 Green Goal Mouille Point Student Landscape Design Competition.

As a one of the host cities of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, the city will announce the winners of the competition on Thursday at the Cape Town Hotel.

This is the first ever student competition in Cape Town, linked to the Green Goal programme of the forthcoming world cup.

Landscape design and architectural students from both the University of Cape Town (UCT) and Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) were invited to submit entries on how the Mouille Point promenade area could be suitably transformed prior to the world cup event.

Source: allAfrica.com: South Africa: Winners of 2010 Design Competition to Be Announced (Page 1 of 1).

Green proposals for downtown Columbia — baltimoresun.com

Solar arrays, “green” roofs and storm-water management that doubles as civic art and takes place only when it’s raining are among the ideas for improving the environment in the redevelopment of downtown Columbia, a consultant told residents this week.

Town Center could be a “city within a garden,” said Keith Bowers, a landscape architect on General Growth Properties’ design team — a vibrant place that makes use of renewable energy and is built with local materials so that little energy is expended to bring supplies here. Bowers’ ecological restoration design, planning and assessment business is leading the sustainability and environmental component of GGP’s efforts to re-create downtown

Read more @ the Source: baltimoresun.comGreen proposals for downtown Columbia 

“Asia-Pacific Gateway for Climate Change” – UN ESCAP

Countries from Asia and the Pacific, both developed and developing, are gathering in Bangkok to share experiences on “co-benefits approach to climate change” – win-win actions which cut greenhouse gas emissions while alleviating poverty.

The meeting today (23 April) is organized by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) in cooperation with the Japanese Ministry of the Environment and the Japanese Overseas Environmental Cooperation Centre.

About 50 participants are sharing good practices on “co-benefits”. The use of landfill gas is an example. Decaying rubbish creates large amounts of greenhouse gasses. Other examples of co-benefits projects are springing up across the region.

In the Philippines, enhanced public transportation services are reducing commute times and carbon emissions at the same time. A project in Malaysia introduced innovative strategies for waste management which lower emission while at the same time reducing the build up of waste.

The meeting was opened by the Deputy Executive Secretary of ESCAP, Mr. Shigeru Mochida, and Japan’s Vice-Minister for Global Environmental Affairs, Mr. Toshiro Kojima. Presentations are given by participants from China, Indonesia, Japan, the United States, Thailand, and from ESCAP and OECD, among others.

SOURCE: Bangkok (United Nations Information Services)

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