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Urban Greening

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Submitted By gabscross
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"Greening urban areas is not just about making places look nice. Evaluate the contribution of green areas in cities to meeting the goals of sustainable development" (40 marks)
Sustainable development is most frequency defined as development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Thus, sustainable development means finding a balance between the fulfillment of human needs with the protection of the natural environment. Sustainable development can be conceptually broken into three constituent parts environmental protection, economic sustainability, and social wellbeing. In this essay I will evaluate how cities have used urban greening to make steps towards sustainable development. To do this I will focus on Singapore and Hamburg.
Firstly, green urban areas act as vital regulating ecosystem services meaning they help to control the climate. Metropolitan areas like Singapore are often affected by the urban heat island effect whereby the inner city can be up to 5°C warmer than surrounding rural areas due to human activities (e.g. the use of cars). Areas of urban greening, for example Fort Canning Park, Singapore’s 18 hectare conservation park, have the ability to undertake the vital role of offsetting the urban heat island effect (UHI). Due to the parks location it acts as a green lung for Singapore’s CBD. With an estimated 1,700 trees the park absorbs heat and has an evaporative cooling effect. As well as reducing the UHI, green urban areas can aid storm water control and flood risk management. An example of this can be seen in Curitiba whereby Jamie Leaner, the town planner, implemented the ‘Solution of the Parks’ to combat flooding. In urbanized cities there is often a problem with stormwater runoff as there are little permeable surfaces (cities usually paved by concrete). The soil and...

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