Just as the Climate for Health program focuses on health leadership regarding climate change, another one of ecoAmerica's sectors, Path to Positive, focuses on climate concerns within communities. Communities of all sizes are a natural and promising place for progress on climate change solutions, and Path to Positive recognizes there is great potential for leadership and innovation at the local level. Pascal Mittermaier, the Nature Conservancy’s new Global Managing Director of Cities, believes that making cities more sustainable is not only a matter of nature, but a matter of health. In fact, the overlaps between ecoAmerica's two sectors, health and communities, are often inextricable. As Mittermaier points out in the article below, "We can help cities better use nature to become more resilient and livable. By deploying green infrastructure, such as sustainable urban drainage or coastal wetlands, we can help cities more cost-effectively protect themselves against storms and floods. We can use our science to find new solutions for air pollution or excessive urban heat and thus help manage major public health issues." To take full advantage of collaborative energy, and to harvest the talent across sectors, health professionals and local leaders can work together on solving climate and health problems. Join us to find out how you can get involved.
By Mark Tercek | May 13, 2015
Making cities more sustainable isn’t just good for nature—it’s good for people, too, of course.
That’s a concept Pascal Mittermaier, the Nature Conservancy’s new Global Managing Director of Cities, believes can transform how leaders incorporate nature into urban planning.
Pascal brings to TNC many years of sustainability experience, most recently leading efforts to integrate innovative environmental and social approaches into all businesses operating under Lend Lease, a global property and construction company.
I am delighted to welcome Pascal to TNC. He and I recently discussed his views on the world’s urban future, green cities and the role of environmentalists in helping cities and nature thrive together.
Tercek: Why turn our attention to cities?
Mittermaier: Cities are having an ever-increasing impact on the natural world. We are in the midst of the greatest human migration ever, with 50 percent of all people already living in cities. By 2050, three-quarters of humanity—almost 7 billion people—will live in cities. Many of these cities will be bigger than entire nations. Cities already emit 75 percent of the world’s carbon and consume 80 percent of all resources. How these cities manage their natural resources will have implications far beyond the actual boundaries of the cities themselves.
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