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Home List of Titles Exploring the role of individual, context and object in sustainable urban consumption
Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1959.3/234124
- Exploring the role of individual, context and object in sustainable urban consumption
- Newton, Peter W.
- The sustainability challenge of the 21st century has no precedent. It can be characterized by a multi-faceted set of pressures associated with: growing populations and their appetite for direct consumption of resources such as energy, water, housing space, urban travel and domestic goods; increasing urbanization and the built environment's currently unsustainable levels of indirect consumption of material resources required to deliver cities with high levels of liveability; uncertainty surrounding the extent (limit) to which the earth's finite resources can continue to be mined or its atmosphere, rivers and oceans used as a sink for pollution and wastes without significant environmental impact (viz. climate change); an economic paradigm dominated by globally integrated production and consumption systems that operate on a logic which is yet to adequately factor in the environmental and social costs associated with manufactured products, built environment designs and contemporary household behaviours in high income societies. Consumption does not feature in either of Australia's federal strategies related to its future population or urban development. It remains the elephant in the room in sustainability debates in high income societies where solutions for winding back unsustainable levels of consumption must be found for two fundamental reasons. The first is centred on issues of social justice and equity; for instance, do we envisage a developed world quality of life that is available for all of the people of the planet? The other is centred on sustainability and whether the rapid global scale increase in pressure on the planet's ecology from the intensified impacts of human activities over the past 200 years---a period termed the Anthropocene (Crutzen and Stoermer, 2000), covering the industrial and post-industrial revolutions---will lead to increased instability in our living environment compared to the relatively stable and nurturing environment in which our societies have evolved to the present. Climate change is one major source of future instability. While cities are linked with many sustainability challenges, they are also places where transformative change is possible. This chapter will explore three key arenas for transition to more sustainable consumption, production and urban development: manufactured objects; design context; and individual and household behaviour change.
- Publication type
- Book chapter
- Motivating change: sustainable design and behaviour in the built environment / Robert Crocker and Steffen Lehmann (eds.), (article in press)
- Publication year
- 2013 (in press)
- Behaviour change; Resource consumption; Sustainability; Urban development
- Publisher URL
- Copyright © 2013.
- Peer reviewed