The idea of a clean city

could well become a myth by 2007. More than half of the world' s population by then would be urban dwelling. The urban ecological footprint would fall over larger proportions of common resources says the 'Global Environment Outlook Three' report of the United Nations Environment Programme

Published: Sunday 30 June 2002

-- >> By 2007, one-half of the world's population will live in urban areas compared to little more than one-third in 1972. By the end of 2002 some 70 per cent of the world's urban population will be living in Africa, Asia or Latin America

>> 1,200 million more people in developing nations were living in urban areas in 2000 as compared to 1975. In next 30 years another 2000 million people will be part of the urban 'experience' in these countries

>> In cities of the developing world, one out of every four households lives in poverty

>> Fewer than 35 per cent of cities in the developing world have their wastewater treated

>> About one-third to one-half of the solid wastes generated within most cities in low and middle income countries are not collected

Footprint: A typical North American city with a population of 650,000 people requires 30,000 km2 of land, to meet its domestic needs. That too without including the environmental demands of the industry

But things are also looking up a bit...

>> 49 per cent of the world's cities have established urban environmental plans

>> 60 per cent of the world's cities involve civil society in a formal participatory process prior to the implementation of major public projects

>> The European Union is even contemplating making noise maps of different regions to regulate the nuisance.

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