Issues 76, September 2006


How Can We Make Our Cities Sustainable?
Kate Noble, Building Green Campaigner, Australian Conservation Foundation
Our cities are currently built in ways that are unsustainable, and unsuitable for our dry climate. It doesn’t have to be that way. Not only is there plenty we can do to make our cities sustainable, there is plenty already being done.

Sustainable Transport for Sustainable Cities
Professor Peter Newman, Director, Institute for Sustainability and Technology Policy, Murdoch University
Sustainability is a powerful and relevant concept for managing the cities of the world as we move rapidly to an urbanised global economy. Sustainable transport is not just a case of developing better technology – we must also develop ways of overcoming car dependence.

Less Public Transport = More Social Equality
Dr John B. Cox, transport consultant
Public transport is a declining system, and increased funding simply diverts money from more important priorities without greatly increasing its use or making a city more sustainable.

Inspirational Cities: Role Models for Melbourne
Cr Janet Rice, Chair, Metropolitan Transport Forum (Melbourne); Mayor, City of Maribyrnong; MAV / McArthur Management 2005 Fellow
Like other Australian cities, Melbourne is dominated by the car, with devastating environmental, health and economic consequences. Eleven cities overseas show how things can be done better. 

Sustainable Housing
Kate Colvin, Victorian Council of Social Service
Our cities are increasingly divided between expensive inner hubs with plenty of access to transport, services and jobs, and outer suburban areas with little of these. Yet more and more people cannot even afford to live on the city fringes, instead becoming homeless. The community must reverse this if it wants a socially sustainable city.

Recycling City Waterfronts
A/Prof John Minnery, School of Geography Planning and Architecture, University of Queensland
Cities around the world have been transformed by urban waterfront renewal projects. These offer major environmental benefits, but can have socially undesirable consequences. Getting the balance right is not easy.

Sustainable Living Starts With How We Chop Up Land
Dimity Reed, urban design writer
Sustainable housing design requires careful planning so that houses face the sun, can use water efficiently and are well insulated. However, the rush for profit often overlooks these factors, to our later cost.

A Local Food System
Centre for Education and Research in Environmental Strategies
We are increasingly disconnected from the source of the food we eat, particularly if we live in large cities. But it does not have to be this way. CERES is showing how it is possible to get back in touch with how food is grown, even in inner Melbourne.

A Way Forward for Coal Communities
Louise Clifton, Greenpeace
Coal-mining communities do not reap the benefits of their industry. A transition to clean energy offers a more healthy and sustainable working future for Australia’s sixth largest city.

Urban Water Supply in Australia
Professor John Quiggin, School of Economics, University of Queensland
Australians are increasingly concerned about the lack of water for our major cities, with many urban centres experiencing water restrictions and discussing radical solutions such as desalination. Trading of water between irrigators and city users has generally been rejected, but may offer benefits to both.

A Sustainable Energy Future
Professor Ian Lowe, President, Australian Conservation Foundation
Sustainable cities cannot exist in isolation. They require national policies, particularly an energy policy to make them work. Perhaps more importantly, they require a genuine vision for the future and values that make us wise global citizens.

Cities and Taxes
Mia Stewart, Prosper Australia
Our economic system, particularly the way we organise our taxes, allows and even encourages the unsustainable use of resources, particularly in our cities. Changes to this system are required if our cities are to grow without destroying the land around them.

Issues: Published by Control Publications, publishers of Australasian Science.
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