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" governments and businesses in wealthy nations should begin turning to green, low-carbon buildings as critical complementary measures to achieve deeper cuts "EMPOWERING COMMUNITIESSustainable housing programmes, in many cases using carbon market tools such as the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) or as part of Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions (NAMAs), illustrate how green building practices are smart economic choices that can reduce poverty and protect the environment.In Mexico, more than 8.9 million people currently live without adequate housing. On the outskirts of Tlajomulco, Mexico lies the Los Silos project, one example of the government's efforts to address this problem while also honouring Mexico's commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Los Silos consists of 6,000 sustainable, affordable homes of the highest quality for low-income families. The world's first national sustainable housing programme qualifying for the CDM, Los Silos features a range of energy-efficient technologies. Greenhouse gas emissions are tracked and recorded, and credits are then traded on the international market. GREEN STREETAs part of the World Green Building Council's participation in the UN COP-17 climate change summit in Durban last year, we collaborated with the Green Building Council of South Africa to retrofit an entire street with green building technologies. The COP-17 legacy project involves thirty low income homes in a street in Cato Manor, Durban, which have undergone a green refurbishment to demonstrate the range of possible social, economic and environmental benefits. Each house was retrofitted with a solar water heater, efficient lighting and a heat-insulation cooker. Roof insulation now regulates temperatures in the homes to ensure they are cooler in summer and warmer in winter, while the new rainwater harvesting systems will enable better water and food security. The local electricity provider, Eskom, installed energy-saving LED street lighting, and has established historical baselines for electricity consumption. Similarly, temperature and humidity recorders will help the project team to evaluate the energy and dollars saved by the retrofit project. The residents have chosen to name the street "Isimosezulu COP17 Place". Isimosezulu means "climate", and will ensure COP-17 has a lasting legacy for the people of Cato Manor.MOVING FORWARDThese three diverse projects demonstrate why thinking in terms of sustainable building is fundamental to every type and size of building or urban project happening all over the world today. We can no longer build only for shelter. We must acknowledge that our buildings shape our communities and are at the very foundations of our economies. For more information please see: www.worldgbc.org nAbout the AuthorJane Henley is the Chief Executive Officer of the World Green Building Council, a role she assumed in February 2010. Previously, she was the founding Chief Executive Officer of the New Zealand Green Building Council, which she helped establish in 2005. She has also been on the boards of the WorldGBC and NZGBC. Ms Henley is a recent past director of the United Nations Sustainable Building Climate Initiative board, an active speaker and is passionate about business leading change. She can be contacted by e-mail at: jhenley@worldgbc.org smart cities 097

The sustainability battle will be won - or lost - in the citiesHongyan Annie Xu, Senior Vice-President, Smart Cities, Schneider Electric Cities are growing - and so are their challenges. Today, cities contain 50 per cent of the world's population, account for 75 per cent of global energy consumption and give off 80 per cent of greenhouse gas emissions. By 2050, they will be home to 70 per cent of the people in the world. This means that over the next 40 years we need to provide new urban capacity equivalent to that of the past 4,000 years. As the world wonders how to meet the growing demand for energy and resources, while drastically reducing global carbon emissions, one thing is clear: this energy-climate battle will be won, or lost, in the cities. Cities are facing growing challenges: scarcity of resources such as energy and water; environmental pressure and pollution; aging and overloaded infrastructure; traffic congestion; crime... Yet cities need to compete for talents, jobs and investments, while reducing their costs and managing their debt. Efficiency helps do more with less.Technology and integration make cities efficient...Schneider Electric is working with more than 200 cities across the world. This is why we understand that making cities sustainable is both a vertical and a horizontal challenge. The vertical challenge refers to the most pressing issues facing the many urban infrastructure domains - mobility, energy, water, services, buildings and public security. For each domain, strong technical and process expertise is required to design an effective solution and ensure data accuracy. Take a major city in Brazil. Over the past ten years, Telvent, our information services company, has provided the municipality with a complete infrastructure management solution. Eleven different control centres manage all parts of the city's critical infrastructure: electricity, water, oil, gas, public transportation and urban traffic, air quality, airports etc. This was made possible by our state-of-the-art technology as well as our thorough understanding of the operations involved in each domain. The horizontal challenge is about making the sum greater than its parts. It requires a holistic approach to interconnect all these smarter vertical domains. Interconnection means both technical integration of legacy systems and open platforms. Improved real-time data collection, when interconnected, will help city authorities to better manage, optimise, and make faster decisions.BUT COLLABORATION IS WHAT MAKES A CITY SMARTEach city is unique - from history to size via availability of resources and complexity of urban development. So its ambition will be unique too: to play host to a major event, to expand, to relieve pain points or just to plan its future. And each city is a complex value-chain - involving not only local and regional governments and inhabitants, but also private companies, utilities, real estate developers as well as investors. So one thing is sure: as cities embark on their own journey to "smart", they need to bring in all their stakeholders, including the private sector, from the start. This calls for a new approach that combines " We do not inherit the Earth from our ancestors: we borrow it from our children " - An Indian proverb098 smart cities