Every year since its establishment in 1970, Earth Day aims to bring into focus not only the increasingly threatening effects of climate change but also highlight the effective measures and adaptation efforts that can improve the quality of our environment. This year’s event comes after a report from the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in March, which presented another warning on the magnitude of changes produced by human-induced global warming and its impact on people and ecosystems. The same report does offer some hopeful prospects as well, showing that adaptation measures can build resilience, but those urgent systemwide transformations are needed to secure a net-zero future. In response to these findings, the 2023 Earth Day is focused on the theme of “Investing in Our Planet,” as an encouragement for governments, institutions, businesses, and civil society to accelerate the change. Read on to discover several citywide initiatives aligned with these objectives of building resilience and a more sustainable future through legislation, civic involvement, and innovative systems.
coastal flooding: The Latest Architecture and News
It’s Time to Be Honest About the Impending Costs of Climate Change
This article was originally published on Common Edge.
The passage of the Biden Administration’s climate change package, the so-called “Inflation Reduction Act,” has predictably split along partisan lines, with Republicans characterizing the bill as an act of reckless government spending, certain to raise taxes and fuel further inflation. But does this act really represent reckless spending? The legislation authorizes $430 billion in spending, the bulk of which—more than $300 billion—is earmarked for tax credits; other spending, and initiatives aimed at stimulating the clean energy economy; and reducing carbon emissions. (The bill also allows Medicare to negotiate prices with drug companies for certain expensive drugs.) The bill is funded in part by a 15% minimum tax on large corporations and an excise tax on companies that repurchase shares of their own stock. Given the scope of the problem, and the escalating future costs of climate inaction, this legislation is an exceedingly modest, but very necessary, first step.
Miami Unveils its 40-Year Mitigation Plan to Combat Sea Level Rise
Earlier this month, the city of Miami released a draft version of its comprehensive plan to combat the effects of climate change. The so-called Stormwater Master Plan (SWMP) will be implemented to alleviate the threat of flooding throughout the city, improve the quality of water in Biscayne Bay, and fortify its coastline against stronger and more frequent storm surges over the next 40 years, at an overall cost estimate of $3.8 billion.
We Must Begin Planning Now for an Inevitable Sea Level Rise
This article was originally published on Common Edge.
In this week's reprint, Martin C. Pedersen talks with John Englander, author of Moving to Higher Ground: Rising Sea Level and the Path Forward, about the “unstoppable” sea-level rise. The article explores the importance of planning for this challenge right away. In fact, "we have some time, but not all the time in the world" states John Englander.
New Technologies Might Save Venice’s Cultural Heritage from the Floods
Factum Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to the use of digital technology for cultural heritage conservation, in collaboration with the Fondazione Giorgio Cini, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) and Iconem have recorded the Island of San Giorgio Maggiore, in Venice, Italy, in its entirety. For more than 10 days, the team using photogrammetry and LiDAR technologies scanned the 10-hectare island. The project entitled ARCHiVe, linked with EPFL's Venice Time Machine aims to “efficiently and effectively aid in the preservation of Venice's fragile cultural heritage”.
Heatherwick Proposes New and Improved Waterfront Experience for San Francisco
Heatherwick Studio has designed the Cove, a new waterfront experience for San Francisco. Seeking to activate and improve the beachfront, “while future-proofing the historic district and the City against the risks of earthquakes and climate change”, the Cove will put in place a next-generation, high-performance waterfront community that uniquely identifies with San Francisco.
KPF Unveils High Performance and Resilient Tower in Boston
KPF and the Chiofaro Company have released images of their latest project The Pinnacle at Central Wharf, a high performance and resilient mixed-use development on the Boston Harbor waterfront. Aiming to reconnect Downtown Boston to the waterfront, the project also puts in place a new public space.
Major Cities Face High Risk of Flooding According to a Goldman Sachs Report
Goldman Sachs has released a report on the effects of climate change on cities across the world. The study explored the major changes that will transform the planet and highlighted several metropolises that will be at risk of flooding.
Kjellander Sjöberg Wins Competition to Climate Proof the Coastal Town of Faaborg in Denmark
Kjellander Sjöberg, one of the leading architectural practices in Scandinavia, in collaboration with GHB Landskabsarkitekter, Mogens A. Morgen, Realise and Tyréns, was selected to design a strategic development plan for Faaborg. The coastal town in southern Denmark is facing many challenges like a high risk of flooding and an important decrease in its population.
CEMEX + Aptum Architecture's Floating Concrete Structures Act as Mangroves for Shorelines
Mangroves are vital for stabilizing shorelines, but their recent depletion presents impending doom for coastal habitats.
Aptum Architecture and CEMEX Research Group might have a solution. Their collaborative project, Rhizolith Island (Isla Rhizolith), is a prototype that explores the potential for floating concrete structures to revitalize deteriorating shorelines. The structure was just installed in Cartagena, Columbia as part of the RC 2016 (Reunion del Concreto), an international Expo and Academic Conference on Concrete.