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Kaid Benfield’s Blog

Green cities explained in a fun cartoon video for kids!

Kaid Benfield

Posted April 5, 2013 in Green Enterprise, Health and the Environment, Living Sustainably

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  Vancouver (by: Leah Gregg, creative commons)

Two days ago, I published Lee Epstein’s summary of the essential elements of green cities.  Many of those are on display in the fast-moving cartoon video below, created in conjunction with the Vancouver 2020 “Greenest City” planning process.  It’s a fun way to see the elements knitted together.

The video was produced to introduce the green vision to the citizens of Vancouver.  Indeed, the city has bold aspirations.  From the executive summary of Vancouver 2020: A Bright Green Future:

“Vancouverites want to live in a city that is vibrant, affordable and sustainable.  They cherish the beauty of this spectacular setting, and rely on the prosperity that has been created from abundant natural resources.  They also hope that tomorrow will be at least as good as today, perhaps even better.  They want an environment that is healthy for themselves – and for their children – and they want jobs that are rewarding and secure. They work hard in the prosperous present and they deserve a bright, green future.

“Why green?  Because in the highly competitive, highly mobile modern world, the elements that make a community healthy also make it wealthy.  Functionally, a compact, efficient city with a well-organized transportation system and a light environmental footprint is cheaper to run and easier to maintain.  The bright, creative people who are the key to conceiving and expanding a globally competitive economy also gravitate to the most desirable – most livable – cities.

“So, Vancouver starts with a fabulous natural advantage:  ours is often named as the most livable city in the world.  But our environmental footprint is almost four times the sustainable level.  That is, if everyone on earth lived as Vancouverites do today, we would need three to four planets to support that level of consumption.

“We only have one Earth, and Vancouverites are well positioned to show the world how to live, and live well, within its limits.   We can be the greenest city on earth.”

Now here’s the video.  Enjoy:

 

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Kaid Benfield writes about community, development, and the environment on Switchboard and in the national media. For more posts, see his blog's home page. Please also visit NRDC’s sustainable communities video channels.

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Switchboard is the staff blog of the Natural Resources Defense Council, the nation’s most effective environmental group. For more about our work, including in-depth policy documents, action alerts and ways you can contribute, visit NRDC.org.

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