De menselijke stad

SINGAPORE – Het ingewikkelde netwerk van internationale organisaties dat het mondiale bestuur vormt, is zo geïsoleerd en ineffectief geworden, dat weinigen er nog op rekenen dat het resultaten zal opleveren. Nu, na tientallen jaren van onderlinge strijd en zelf-marginalisering, moeten deze internationale organisaties zich rond een steeds urgentere mondiale prioriteit verenigen: die van de duurzame verstedelijking.

De wereld ondergaat een ongekende en onomkeerbare golf van verstedelijking, waarbij het deel van de wereldbevolking dat in steden leeft naar verwachting in 2030 op 60% zal komen. Maar deze snelle verstedelijking drijft de industriële consumptie van fossiele brandstoffen en het watergebruik van de huishoudens op, en laat de vraag naar voedsel stijgen in gebieden waar landbouwgrond schaars is. Kortom, de huidige ontwikkelingen op het gebied van de verstedelijking zijn niet duurzaam.

Maar de bestaande pogingen om hierin verandering te brengen zijn bedroevend ontoereikend. Hoewel de Algemene Vergadering van de Verenigde Naties zijn organisatie voor menselijke nederzettingen, UN-HABITAT, heeft opgedragen de duurzame verstedelijking te bevorderen, heeft deze dienst niet genoeg invloed om ervoor te zorgen dat dit cruciale probleem op de mondiale agenda terechtkomt.

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