How do Urban Sprawl and Densification Affect the Carbon Footprint?

Spatial Distribution of U.S. Household Carbon Footprints Reveals Suburbanization Undermines Greenhouse Gas Benefits of Urban Population Density(Abstract, Christopher Jones and Daniel M. Kammen, Environ. Sci. Technol., Dec. 13, 2013)

Also discussed here: Suburban Sprawl Cancels Carbon Footprint Savings of Dense Urban Cores(Science Daily, Jan. 6, 2014)

And here: Carbon Footprint Maps(University of California, Berkeley, Sep. 21, 2012)

Today we review a report that examined the carbon footprint of most cities in the USA. The authors found that the emissions from suburbs were twice those of urban cores which combine high population density with low carbon emissions. While much attention is paid by many urban planners to densification of urban cores in an attempt to reduce emissions and infrastructure pressures, it seems that the overall emissions will not change unless attention is paid to the suburbs as well, particularly in more use of electric vehicles and photo-voltaic solar cells.

NYC carbon footprint

To see Key Quotes and Links to key reports about this post, click HERE


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