"Linking Visions to Practice: Analysis of the COP-21 Implementations by the Local Governments of Vancouver, Hong Kong, Jakarta, and Delhi"

Event

International Conference on Geographies of Health and Living in Cities:

Making Cities Healthy for All

Organizer

The University of Hong Kong (Hong Kong)

Venue

The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong 

Date

June 22, 2016

Research Team Member

Kenneth Poon, Dr. Ailin Iwan, Inna Amasheva, Perdana Miraj, Aaron Leung

Abstract

Climate change is an unprecedented problem that needs to be addressed holistically, sensitively, and thoroughly because of its imminent impact on the future of the planet, hence, the future of mankind.

 

At the end of the COP-21 in Paris on December 11, 2015, world leaders pledged to keep the global emissions of greenhouse gasses by 2020 and aggregate emission pathways consistent with holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2 degree Celsius above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 degree Celsius.

 

In light of this significant and recent legislative development, the study of cities is important and timely because cities represent areas that are rapidly growing with higher population density. This study will look at four purposely selected cities: namely two well developed cities label as sustainable cities (Vancouver, Canada and Hong Kong SAR, the People’s Republic of China) and two cities from developing countries with numerous persisting environmental problems (Jakarta, Indonesia and New Delhi, India). The COP-21 climate agreement is used as a lens to see how an optimal vision at the city level can be implemented through various stakeholders’ (governments, civil societies, corporations, NGOs, and so forth) efforts to combat global warming.

 

This exploration study is aimed at understanding the success of Vancouver and Hong Kong in gaining a sustainable city status and the struggles of Jakarta and New Delhi in facing major environmental challenges such as air pollution.

 

The study will therefore analyze how the COP-21 agreement and its city-related outcome documents can be used to mitigate the aforesaid problems. Implications, recommendations, and future directions of this study will be discussed with the goal to create a realistic framework of sustainable development at the city level.