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Climate Change and Cities: First Assessment Report of the Urban Climate Change Research Network

  • Examines mitigation and adaptation strategies for developing and developed cities, enabling readers to utilize information on both, and leverage co-benefits between the two
  • Case study illustrations from both developing and developed cities around the world provide urban decision-makers with state-of-the-knowledge on climate change and examples of effective and efficient practices with potential for scaling-up
  • Unites the work and effort of dozens of expert researchers worldwide – often bringing their international expertise to work in their own cities as local voices

By: Cynthia Rosenzweig (Editor), William D Solecki (Editor), Stephen A Hammer (Editor), Shagun Mehrotra (Editor), Anna Tibaijuka (Foreword By), Rajendra Kumar Pachauri (Foreword By), Michael R Bloomberg (Foreword By), Jeffrey D Sachs (Foreword By)

286 pages, 60 colour & 34 b/w illustrations, 15 tables

Cambridge University Press

Paperback | Apr 2011 | #188830 | ISBN-13: 9781107004207
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NHBS Price: £40.99 $53/€47 approx

About this book

Urban areas are home to over half the world's people and are at the forefront of the climate change issue. The need for a global research effort to establish the current understanding of climate change adaptation and mitigation at the city level is urgent. To meet this goal a coalition of international researchers – the Urban Climate Change Research Network (UCCRN) – was formed at the time of the C40 Large Cities Climate Summit in New York in 2007.

Climate Change and Cities is the First UCCRN Assessment Report on Climate Change and Cities. The authors are all international experts from a diverse range of cities with varying socio-economic conditions, from both the developing and developed world.

"I [...] applaud the work of groups such as UCCRN and the many researchers from both developing and developed cities contributing to this important research initiative and creating a mechanism to help cities further empower themselves. [...] I am convinced that this body of knowledge will be of direct benefit and inspiration to the cities which we are supporting to develop climate action plans. It will help cities make more informed decisions about how climate change will affect public health, local infrastructure, and in turn, their own economic vitality in the coming decades."
– Anna Tibaijuka, Executive Director of UN-Habitat, from the Foreword

"For the challenges that a city as Mexico City must face, efforts like ARC3 are crucial to provide the much needed scientific assessment to effectively address the challenges posed by climate change."
– Marcello Ebrard, Mayor of Mexico City

"Cities need increasingly sound scientific knowledge to take decisions related to combating climate change. We therefore welcome initiatives like the ARC3 and hope that cities all over the world can benefit from its findings."
– Gilberto Kassab, Mayor of Sao Paulo

"The First Assessment Report on Climate Change in Cities is a critical piece in helping cities to develop sound, science-based policies to address the climate change mitigation and adaptation challenges they face."
– Babatunde Raji Fashola, SAN, Governor of Lagos State

"Cities are leaders in taking action to fight climate change. ARC3 is a must read for city leaders who want to incorporate the most current understanding of climate change science in cities into their decision-making."
– David Miller, Mayor of Toronto and Chair of the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group

"ARC3 fills a critical gap in addressing climate change issues in Indonesia's vulnerable and diverse urban areas such as Jakarta, Palangkaraya, and Samarinda city."
– Senator Hon. Hambdani and Senator Hon. Bambang Susilo, Indonesia

"[...] an outstanding overview [...] extremely timely and relevant [...] This reviewer recommends this report to all students, researchers, and policy makers interested in urban and environmental planning, hazard mitigation, urban infrastructures, water systems, energy, transportation, or public health."
Journal of Planning and Research


Executive summary

1. Introduction

Part I. Defining the Risk Framework:
2. Cities, disasters and climate risk
3. Urban climate: processes, trends and projections

Part II. Urban Sectors:
4. Climate change and urban energy systems
5. Climate change, water and wastewater
6. Climate change and urban transportation systems
7. Climate change and human health in cities

Part III. Cross-Cutting Issues:
8. The role of urban land in climate change
9. Cities and climate change: the challenges for governance

Annex: list of contributors

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Cynthia Rosenzweig is a Senior Research Scientist at the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies where she heads the Climate Impacts Group. She recently co-chaired the New York City Panel on Climate Change, a body of experts convened by the Mayor to advise the city on adaptation for its critical infrastructure. She co-led the Metropolitan East Coast Regional Assessment of the U.S. National Assessment of the Potential Consequences of Climate Variability and Change, sponsored by the U.S. Global Change Research Program. She was a Coordinating Lead Author of the IPCC Working Group II Fourth Assessment Report, and served on the IPCC Task Group on Data and Scenario Support for Impact and Climate Analysis. A recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, she joins impact models with climate models to predict future outcomes of both land-based and urban systems under altered climate conditions. She is a Professor at Barnard College and a Senior Research Scientist at the Earth Institute at Columbia University.

William Solecki is a Professor in the Department of Geography, Hunter College, City University of New York. He has led or co-led numerous projects on the process of urban environmental change and transformation. As Director of the CUNY Institute for Sustainable Cities, he has worked extensively on connecting cutting-edge urban environmental science to everyday practice and action in cities. He most recently served as Co-Chair of the New York Panel on Climate Change. He is also a member of the Scientific Steering Committee of the Urban and Global Environmental Change core project of the International Human Dimensions Programme.

Stephen Hammer is the Executive Director of the Energy Smart Cities Initiative, a project of the Joint U.S.-China Collaboration on Clean Energy (JUCCCE), which runs energy and climate policy training and technical assistance programs for local governments around China. Stephen joined JUCCCE in January 2010 after serving as director of the Urban Energy Program at Columbia University's Center for Energy, Marine Transportation and Public Policy. He has authored or co-authored dozens of policy studies and journal articles on urban sustainability planning, urban energy systems, distributed generation technology and the impacts of climate change on local and regional energy networks. In addition to his work at JUCCCE, Stephen is an Adjunct Professor at Columbia University, a member of New York City Mayor Bloomberg's Energy Policy Task Force, a consultant to the State of New York on microgrid and climate change adaptation issues, and a policy advisor on urban energy efficiency to the World Bank.

Shagun Mehrotra is Managing Director of Climate and Cities, an international policy advisor facility at Columbia University's Center for Climate Systems Research. As a Columbia University Faculty Fellow, he provides research and policy advice focusing on infrastructure economics and finance, development economics and poverty reduction in slums. He has developed a comprehensive framework for city climate risk assessment that combines hazards, vulnerabilities and agency. Previously, Shagun was on the staff of the World Bank, leading infrastructure reform of state-owned utilities in Africa. Over the last decade, his advice has been sought by national and local governments in East Africa, South-East Asia, China and India, as well as the United Nations' Human Development Report, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Columbia Earth Institute. The President of India recently launched Shagun's co-authored book Bankruptcy to Billions: How the Indian Railways Transformed, with a foreword by the Prime Minister of India.

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