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Planning Post Carbon Cities

The 20th century has been the age of cities. They have experienced their biggest growth in history. Planetary urbanization has been fuelled by industrial development, which induced a radical shift in the relation between humankind and the environment. While cities became symbols of progress and welfare they also portrayed poverty, deprivation, pollution and an extreme voracity. 

Most of the available energy and natural resources are being currently consumed to develop and sustain urban activities; not least the operation of buildings, mobility and industrial production.  Moreover, nearly 80% of the energy produced worldwide is extracted from fossil fuels such as oil or gas. The growing awareness about the effects of the carbon economy, both at global and local scale, has encouraged the exploration of cleaner and cheaper energy alternatives.  

A paradigm shift is on the horizon as post-carbon cities are turning a realistic outlook which offers unprecedented challenges and opportunities. It is now time to focus on the cities we want in the future, to construct utopian visions in which urban progress is based on ecology, equality and wellness.

The PLEA 2020 Conference will look into the interplay between research, technology and design in defining and planning future cities, with special attention to the following topics and sub-topics:

  • Sustainable Buildings (energy efficient buildings, health and wellbeing, material technology, vernacular and refurbishment)

  • Resources (renewable energies, technologies, circular economy, nature based solutions, urban metabolism)

  • Resilient and Extreme Design (adaptation, self-sufficiency, relief, urban climate, climate change, vulnerability, risk management)

  • Sustainable Communities (urban climate, outdoor comfort, mobility, walkability, planning and policies, culture and society, future city visions, green infrastructure)

  • Analysis and Methods (simulation and design tools, surveying and monitoring methods)

  • Education, Awareness and Dissemination (architectural training for sustainability, professional development, sustainable initiatives and environmental activism)

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