New ISO standard for urban resilience in development

There’s no stemming the tide, so city leaders need to build resilience in order to cope. Work on a new International Standard for urban resilience, led by the United Nations, has just kicked off, aiming to help local governments build safer and more sustainable urban environments.

The development of the standard is being led by UN-Habitat, the United Nations programme for human settlements

City living is where it’s at. The top 600 cities in the world house 20 % of the global population but produce 60 % of the world’s GDP, and the numbers are growing. It is estimated that, by 2050, 68 % of us will be living in cities), increasing the scale of impact when disasters strike. Which they will. In 2018, for example, more than 17 million were displaced by sudden-onset disasters such as floods).

https://resiliencepost.com/2019/05/09/the-term-resilience-is-everywhere-but-what-does-it-really-mean/

Work has now started on a new ISO standard for urban resilience, aimed at supporting national and local governments build their capacity to face the new challenges arising from climate change and shifting demographics. It will define a framework for urban resilience, clarify the principles and concepts, and help users to identify, implement and monitor appropriate actions to make their cities more resilient.

Read entire post New ISO standard for urban resilience in development | Clare Naden | ISO.org
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Abu Dhabi named the most ‘resilient’ city in the Middle East

Abu Dhabi has been named the most resilient city in the Middle East in terms of city wealth (GDP), personal wealth (households with an income greater than $70,000), and demographics, according to research by Savills.

Abu Dhabi was ranked above Dubai, Riyadh, Kuwait City and Jeddah in the regional list.
Abu Dhabi was ranked above Dubai, Riyadh, Kuwait City and Jeddah in the regional list.

The UAE capital featured highest in the Savills Resilient Cities Index, launched as part of research which examines which cities will be able to withstand or embrace the technological, demographic, and leadership disruption facing global real estate today and in 10 years’ time.

It showed that investors looking for long-term returns should look to Middle East, Indian and second tier Chinese cities as the markets that are likely to grow in the face of global disruption in the coming decades, but today remain relatively untapped.

Read entire post Abu Dhabi named the most ‘resilient’ city in the Middle East | Sam Brigde | Arabian Business

The disconnect in declaring a climate emergency and approving a pipeline

On June 18, the government of Canada declared a national climate emergency. The next day, the same government approved the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion (TMX), which will be able to move almost 600,000 barrels of oil per day from Alberta to the Port of Burnaby in British Columbia.

Trans Mountain pipeline expansion (TMX), which will be able to move almost 600,000 barrels of oil per day from Alberta to the Port of Burnaby in British Columbia
The Trans Mountain pipeline expansion (TMX), will be able to move almost 600,000 barrels of oil per day from Alberta to the Port of Burnaby in British Columbia

If this seems like a contradiction, you are not alone.

To date, Canada is the largest single jurisdiction to have declared a national climate emergency, following nations like Scotland, regions like Catalonia in Spain and cities like Vancouver and San Francisco.

Altogether, 83 million people, living 623 jurisdictions, are now living under a state of climate emergency. The vast majority of these declarations have occurred in the last six months. The term climate emergency intentionally evokes a state of emergency — and implies imminent action on the part of the government.

Read entire post The disconnect in declaring a climate emergency and approving a pipeline | ThoroldNews

Toronto unveils ‘resilience’ strategy to counteract future effects of climate change

The strategy includes other lofty goals: eliminating poverty, building green infrastructure and increasing government transparency.

In the coming years, the city’s climate is expected to become more violent and less predictable. Extreme weather events, like heat waves and violent rainstorms, are projected to become more common.
In the coming years, the city’s climate is expected to become more violent and less predictable. Extreme weather events, like heat waves and violent rainstorms, are projected to become more common.

Climate change will affect weather over Toronto and the city will need to invest in ways to adapt to significant meteorological changes, said the city’s chief resilience officer, Elliott Cappell, who was in charge of writing the 157-page document.

“Toronto is getting hotter, wetter and wilder, and of course that’s a result of climate change”

In the coming years, the city’s climate is expected to become more violent and less predictable. Extreme weather events, like heat waves and violent rainstorms, are projected to become more common. On Sunday, Lake Ontario water levels hit their highest point ever recorded and parts of the Toronto Islands were flooded. It’s the second time in three years that the city has seen such severe flooding.

Read entire post Toronto unveils ‘resilience’ strategy to counteract future effects of climate change on city | Matthew Lapierre | The Glode and Mail

Detroit’s urban beekeepers are transforming the city’s vacant lots

Detroit natives Timothy Paule and Nicole Lindsey witnessed first-hand the negative effects the housing crisis had on their city. With roughly 90,000 vacant lots, neighborhoods have been destabilized and communities abandoned with little action being taken, in their view, to fix the root of the problem.

When Paule became sick one recent winter and developed a really bad cough that neither medicine, home remedies or a trip to the doctor could cure, he visited a local store where the owner introduced him to the benefits of raw honey. He explained to Paule that his supply came from a beekeeper. That led to an aha moment for Nicole Lindsey.

Read entire post Detroit’s urban beekeepers are transforming the city’s vacant lots | National Geographic

New International Standard for measuring the performance of cities going “smart”

How can cities adapt and prepare to ensure they provide adequate resources and a sustainable future? They can’t improve what they can’t measure. The latest in the ISO series of standards for smart cities aims to help.

How ISO 37122, Sustainable cities and communities – Indicators for smart cities, gives cities a set of indicators for measuring their performance across a number of areas

The ISO 37100 range of International Standards helps communities adopt strategies to become more sustainable and resilient. The newest in the series and just published, ISO 37122, Sustainable cities and communities – Indicators for smart cities, gives cities a set of indicators for measuring their performance across a number of areas, allowing them to draw comparative lessons from other cities around the world and find innovative solutions to the challenges they face.

The standard will complement ISO 37120, Sustainable cities and communities – Indicators for city services and quality of life, which outlines key measurements for evaluating a city’s service delivery and quality of life. Together, they form a set of standardized indicators that provide a uniform approach to what is measured, and how that measurement is to be undertaken, that can be compared across city and country.

Read entire post New International Standard for measuring the performance of cities going “smart” | Clare naden | ISO.org

The term “resilience” is everywhere — but what does it really mean?

The term “resilience” is everywhere. And everywhere, it seems, it means something a little different.

Resilience: An ability to recover from or adjust easily from misfortune or change

Resilience has been used to describe people and systems that bounce back from negative experiences and disturbances. It has also been used to refer to systems that survive being jostled around — whether or not they go back to where they were before, or to any stable state, for that matter.

While some have argued resilience is an empty concept, the widespread use of the idea of resilience across disciplines, sectors and professions suggests it is a necessary concept. Resilience is related to change. And given the rapid change happening in the environment, technology and society, such extensive use of the term reflects this need.

Read entire article The term “resilience” is everywhere — but what does it really mean? | Kate Knuth | Ensia

Washington introduces ‘resiliency’ plan to protect against 21st-century threats

The initiatives are part of the city’s “Resilient D.C.” strategy, a 160-page plan that is the culmination of the city’s two-year planning process.

The D.C. plan sets four goals: leveraging technology, fostering inclusive growth, mitigating the effects of climate change and improving public health.

Kevin Bush, who serves as D.C.’s chief resilience officer through a Rockefeller Foundation grant, told StateScoop that he designed the technology component of the resilience strategy — which includes 16 of the document’s 68 total goals — to enable the city to leverage, rather than “just respond to” technological advancements.

Read entire post Washington introduces ‘resiliency’ plan to protect against 21st-century threats | Ryan Johnston | StateScoop

Calgary forges ahead with ‘resilience’ plan despite folding of 100 Resilient Cities program

City staff say they will forge ahead with plans to implement a “resilience strategy” this spring despite the news earlier this month that the Rockefeller Foundation’s 100 Resilient Cities program will end funding and wrap up operations by this summer.

“(Despite) the announcement from 100RC, we continue with the development of our strategy. We’re just kind of ready to cross the finish line here,” deputy city manager Brad Stevens said following the announcement from the Rockefeller Foundation. “We’ll be releasing our strategy in the next couple of months.”

Calgary was first selected in 2016 to join the network of global cities — including New York, Toronto and Mexico City — to tackle problems facing urban centres, including high unemployment, economic diversification and extreme weather events.

Read entire post City forges ahead with ‘resilience’ plan despite folding of 100 Resilient Cities program  |  Meghan Potkins  |  Calgary Herald

Urban resilience: Why should we pay more attention?

Think cities — how they form, prosper, interconnect, and yield exponential gains on all fronts. There are numerous reasons why cities are created — colonial ambitions; sea-connectivity; part of ancient routes of trades, including slavery; centre for learning; economic growth; sites of administrative and cultural centres; and religious importance. Thus, there are reasons galore why cities are formed but very few on why they disappear at the drop of a hat.

However, climatic events can cause catastrophe to cities that can render them grounded in minutes

Change in the structure of national and local economy, poor infrastructure, rising pollution levels and lack of physical safety leads to decline of cities at a glacial pace. However, climatic events can cause catastrophe to cities that can render them grounded in minutes. The floods of Mumbai and Chennai, Nepal Earthquake, Uttarakhand floods are few such instances where our cities, many hundreds of years old, became paralysed and inhospitable. Cities are at real risks.

By one estimate, every year, around 46 million people in cities are at risk from flooding from storm surges in the East Asia region alone. Many coastal cities, particularly in Asia, are staring at the risk of submersion due to rising sea levels. More than 1,000 people died and 45 million people suffered losses in terms of loss of livelihood, homes, and services in 2017 when severe floods hit south-east Asian cities, including Dhaka, Mumbai and Chennai

Read entire post Urban resilience: Why should we pay more attention? | DEVASHISH DHAR | OrfOnline

Change at 100 Resilient Cities program won’t affect city’s equity efforts, official says

“There might eventually be fewer networking opportunities with 100 Resilient Cities and fewer opportunities to consult with 100 Resilient Cities staff, but the impact will be negligible now that the city has our own strategy and staff integrated into city operations,” said Michelle Brooks, spokeswoman for the Mayor’s Office.

The 100 Resilient Cities program was established in 2013 to provide financial and technical assistance to help cities implement strategies to tackle the social, economic and physical challenges of the 21st century.

Tulsa was selected to be part of the 100 Resilient Cities program in 2014. In early 2016, former Mayor Dewey Bartlett hired a chief resilience officer to focus on disaster management. After taking office in December 2016, Mayor G.T Bynum shifted the focus of the program to racial disparities and equity, and hired DeVon Douglass to be the city’s chief resilience officer.

Read entire post Change at 100 Resilient Cities program won’t affect city’s equity efforts, official says | Kevin Canfield | Tusla World

Standards cooperation is key to making AI and smart cities a reality

Hosted by a different member each year, the meeting of the Global Standards Collaboration, GSC-22, was jointly organized by ISO and the IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission). The two-day event attracted participants from around the world, with notable representation from those countries where information communication technology (ICT) is set to play an increasingly strong role in the economy.

Standardization is essential to artificial intelligence – its future and its wide adoption across the world

The first day was dedicated to innovative presentations and lively panel discussions on the theme of smart sustainable cities. GSC members shared their views on standards relevant to cities that face substantial challenges in choosing suitable standards for their requirements.

Recognizing the fast pace of technological evolution combined with rapidly growing populations, members encouraged continued discussion, particularly on the development of guidelines and standards to enable seamless data exchange and interoperability.

Read entire article Standards cooperation is key to making AI and smart cities a reality | Barnaby Lewis | ISO.org