Building Conscious Cities

About 35% of the Indian population lives in cities, and the annual urban population growth (%) in Indian cities stands at 2.3% (WB indicators, 2021). The mammoth rise in the infrastructure of cities has led to undue stress not only on climate causing frequent flooding (e.g. Bangalore, Assam), droughts (e.g. Maharashtra) and heat stress (e.g. Delhi) but also adversely affecting the wellbeing of citizens. To mitigate this, the Hon’ble Prime Minister of India, in the recently concluded COP 26, put forward the vision of achieving Net zero emissions by 2070. To achieve this target, climate conscious cities can play a vital part. Climate conscious cities would not only mitigate the negative impact on climate but also increase the well-being of citizens.

The panel discussion of this session will focus on ways to build cities which provide clean air and water, withstand rising heat waves, increase the health and wellbeing of citizens through equitable provision of services such as water, energy and health care access to citizens with the aim of reducing the undue impact on climate and at the same time improving the quality of life of urban residents.