Catalyst Applied Innovation Seminar (CTL 300) Webguide for Sustainable Infrastructure, Production, and Consumption
The material economy and our living environment are integral parts of sustainable development. The prevalent linear production system overuses materials, degrades the environment, and negatively affects human health. Our infrastructure including buildings, energy, transportation, and water treatment not only contributes to our ecological footprint, but also creates environments that promote unsustainable lifestyles. Cities and universities are on the forefront of innovation and creativity to explore and promote sustainable futures. This case focuses on improvements to production, consumption, and infrastructure in general and in urban areas and college campuses in particular.
Challenge: Sustainable City
By 2050, global population is predicted to reach 9.8 million with more than ⅔ of population living in cities. High density living has the potential to improve living standards as well as lower our overall ecological footprint. At the same time, over a quarter of urban population lives in slums without access to basic infrastructure. In middle- and high-income countries, suburban sprawl overuses resources and land. Cities from Singapore to San Francisco are modeling sustainable practices, yet sustainable environments are often only accessible to upper income populations. This challenge therefore addresses sustainability in the city: how can we make cities sustainable and livable for all?