Coach House Geography

Interesting Geography stuff for InterHigh

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

    Join 14 other followers

Cities to Grab Lands Equaling Size of Mongolia In Next 20 Years, Study Predicts

Posted by Lindy on September 18, 2011


http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/09/110915163955.htm

ScienceDaily (Sep. 16, 2011) — In the next 20 years, more than 590,000 square miles of land globally — more than twice the size of Texas — will be gobbled up by cities, a trend that shows no signs of stopping and one that could pose threats on several levels, says a Texas A&M University geographer who is part of a national team studying the problem.

“This massive urbanization of land is happening worldwide, but India, China and Africa have experienced the highest rates of urban land expansion,” Güneralp explains. “Our study covered the 30 years from 1970 to 2000, and we found that urban growth is occurring at the highest rates in developing countries. However, it is the North America that experienced the largest increase in total urban land.”

The United Nations predicts that by 2030 there will be an additional 1.47 billion people living in urban areas; and, urban population growth is a significant driver of urban land change, especially in developing regions such in India and Africa. However, economic growth is also important, particularly in China.

Coastal areas are especially vulnerable to urban expansion. This makes coastal areas a special area of concern because people and infrastructures are at risk to rising sea levels, flooding, hurricanes, tsunamis and other disasters.

There is a good side to urbanisation however. People who live in cities tend to have better access to health care, water and sanitation facilities, and cities are shown to be more efficient with regards to such things as energy consumption compared to rural areas. In cities, people exchange. They exchange ideas, experiences as well as materials. All these spur innovation and create business opportunities. Because of all these interactions, cities are the most likely places to come up with the solutions to the emerging environmental and economic challenges that we face.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

 
%d bloggers like this: