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Achieving a sustainable future is far from easy. But, in order for there to be consistent progress, individuals, businesses and countries must come together. What’s more, during a time when urbanisation is increasing, and with 68% of the world’s population expected to live in urban areas by 2050, it is clear that out cities could have a serious impact on the environment.
Implementing sustainable urban systems could avoid large quantities of emissions from being released into the atmosphere. There are several ways of working towards these systems, but for the work to be both effective and efficient, it must become a main focus imminently.
Let’s take a look at how to improve the sustainability of urban systems.
Sustainable transport still has a lot of untapped potential. The transport sector is currently the biggest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions in the UK. Aside from preventing further climate damage, improving sustainable transport options could also seriously improve public health.
By 2041, London Mayor Sadiq Khan aims for 80% of all Londoners’ trips to be made by foot, bike or public transport. This will be implemented by the spread of low/no-emission zones and the increase of hydrogen-powered or electric buses. Khan is also working to ensure London’s entire transport system is zero emission by 2050.
A wasteful life is not a sustainable one. Unnecessary waste in any form is harmful to the environment, and in turn contributes to climate change. UK homes generate around 21% of the UK’s carbon emissions. Commercial buildings add significantly to this percentage, meaning that there should be a more refined focus on lowering energy consumption, and in turn waste.
Intelligent energy management is a holistic approach to energy optimisation, involving smart metering, identifying inefficiencies and managing energy-saving solutions. At EIC we don’t just find and fix problems, we seek out opportunities that will support sustainable growth.
The energy grid is evolving, and systems will have to adapt as we move towards a flexible energy landscape. Data-driven energy optimisation could be the key to business profitability, as well as deep carbon reductions.
Gathering and understanding data through advanced metering provides insights into how energy is being used, as well as identifying areas of possible waste. Identifying these areas of inefficiency is essential for finding solutions that reduce consumption and lower costs. This provides businesses with unexpected savings – which can be crucial in these uncertain times. As well as reducing emissions and improving sustainability.
Cities around the world are now recognising the need to be sustainable. Copenhagen is set to be the first carbon-neutral city by 2025, and is considered to be the most bicycle friendly city in the world, along with Amsterdam. Vancouver produces the least greenhouse gas emissions of all cities in North America, whilst Reykjavik has encouraged greater use of public transport such as hydrogen buses, as well as introducing more cycling paths and electric vehicles. The UN has also recognised the urgency: goal 11 of its sustainable development goals concerns ‘safe, resilient and sustainable’ cities. Urban planners are now seriously considering sustainable, retrofitted infrastructure and energy systems. But in the face of increasing urbanisation and a growing global population, much more needs to be done.
Managing your energy and emissions levels across multiple sites and throughout the value chain can be difficult. With so many other responsibilities, it can seem near impossible to figure out how to improve energy efficiency and emissions. But it doesn’t have to be that way.
At EIC, we understand the growing importance of securing a green future. We help businesses to monitor and manage their energy and carbon, always with sustainability in mind. Our in-house team can guide you through energy monitoring, carbon management, green procurement and compliance legislation.
Get in touch today to find out how we can help you to reach your sustainability goals.