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Guangzhou forum explores sustainable cities


The 11th Urban Innovation Forum, part of a series of events intended to share and promote global innovations in urban management with Guangzhou residents, was held at Guangzhou Library on Nov 25.

Ms. Wu Jie, a senior engineer and head of the Low Carbon City Planning Sector of the Guangzhou Urban Planning and Design Survey Research Institute, was invited to the rostrum. Wu explored the construction of sustainable cities centering on three cases from the 2016 Guangzhou International Award for Urban Innovation (Guangzhou Award).

Wu Jie, a senior engineer at Guangzhou Urban Planning and Design Survey Research Institute, shares urban innovations with Guangzhou residents during the 11th Urban Innovation Forum held on Nov 25, Guangzhou. [Photo provided to guangzhouaward.org]

Malang, Indonesia

Slum areas in Malang, Indonesia, were frequent victims of floods. Glintung village was among them. With technical support from local universities, Malang leaders have taken active measures and called on concerted efforts from villagers to respond to climate challenges.

The local government has launched the "Water Banking Movement" -- Transforming Glintung Go Green from Flood Risk Area -- under which villagers started planting trees in communities, building catchment areas in every house in the neighborhood, creating vertical and sky gardens as well as producing organic food. Moreover, all these projects were considered as part of the local cultural heritages, and relevant tourist projects were launched.

Those practices have not only enhanced communities' capability to deal with climate change but have also helped improve villagers' living environment and promoted local economic development. Malang and Glintung village are important references for other cities sharing the same situation across the globe.

Sydney, Australia

Sydney was named a "deserving city" at the 2016 Guangzhou Award for its initiative of Delivering Sustainable Sydney 2030 - Addressing Climate Change.

The city is determined to deliver a green, global and connected city through setting green and low carbon goals for buildings and public spaces in terms of waste, carbon emissions, water and energy consumption, and green spaces.

Government departments have also established partnerships with commercial property owners, residential property owners and commercial tenants, setting up a special team to ensure the goals are reached.

The advanced green and low carbon goal system and technologies adopted in this Australian city have set an example for other cities to follow in building sustainability.

Songpa-gu, South Korea

As for the third case, Songpa Solar Nanum (Sharing) Power Plant, in Songpa-gu, South Korea, showcases an innovative operation method in which it facilitates development of renewable energies and help families lacking energy sources through integrating environmental sustainability and energy benefits. Such practices offer alternatives for energy subsidies and are of great reference value to cities and countries with inadequate energy.

In addition, 25 percent of net profit generated is used for installing infrastructure for renewable energy in other countries.

The Urban Innovation Forum was sponsored by Foreign Affairs Office of People's Government of Guangzhou Municipality, Guangzhou Institute for Urban Innovation, Guangzhou Library, and Guangzhou Urban Planning and Design Survey Research Institute.