Rio+20 – Cities as Major Sustainability Players

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Dana Galiyeva, Consultant
Upstream Sustainability Services

One of the most successful events at Rio+20 was the side event on Leadership in Green Buildings, where Japan announced its initiative Future Cities We Want– an international platform for linking and spreading sustainable cities around the world to provide mutual support including capacity building for city leaders and technical assistance from advanced cities and knowledge exchange among all cities.

Singapore’s journey in greening its building sector was described by Dr John Keung, chief executive of the Republic’s Building and Construction Authority (BCA), who revealed that BCA has certified 12 per cent of Singapore’s total building stock since 2005, when its Green Mark certification scheme was launched, which rates buildings for its environmental impact and performance.

Another big player at the Rio+20 conference was ICLEI – Local Governments who organised  25 side events on cities’ roles in global sustainability raising numerous critical issues and suggestions. Participants discussed a change from cities as a problem to cities as a major actor and part of solution to environmental problems. There was a lot brought up and suggested, more detailed reports and publications can be found on the ICLEI website.

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