Assessment of climate change mitigation and adaptation in cities
- Authors: Claire L. Walsh 1 ; Richard J. Dawson 2 ; Jim W. Hall 3 ; Stuart L. Barr 4 ; Michael Batty 5 ; Abigail L. Bristow 6 ; Sebastian Carney 7 ; Athanasios S. Dagoumas 8 ; Alistair C. Ford 9 ; Colin Harpham 10 ; Miles R. Tight 11 ; Helen Watters 12 ; Alberto M. Zanni 13
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- Source: Proceedings of the ICE - Urban Design and Planning, Volume 164, Issue 2, 01 June 2011 , pages 75 –84
Cities are faced with a number of sustainability challenges in the context of climate change. There is an urgent need to limit greenhouse gas emissions from cities if ambitious mitigation targets are to be met. Meanwhile, cities are vulnerable to the impacts of climate change unless adaptation plans can be put in place. The need to connect climate change adaptation and mitigation with broader assessment of sustainability is becoming increasingly recognised. This paper describes an urban integrated assessment facility developed by the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research, which simulates socio-economic change, climate impacts and greenhouse gas emissions over the course of the twenty first century at the city scale. The urban integrated assessment facility adopts a broad-scale systems approach to urban development and sustainability assessment. It incorporates a multi-sectoral model of the regional economy, hierarchical city-scale spatial interaction model and modules for assessment of climate impacts, adaptation options and greenhouse gas emissions. The paper demonstrates how the urban integrated assessment facility quantifies synergies and conflicts between adaptation to climate change and mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions in order to improve decision making and facilitate the development of portfolios of planning policies that together have a realistic prospect of achieving sustainable outcomes for cities.