Sustainable Communities—Eliminate Poverty & Boost Prosperity

Sustainable city

By WONNE Afronelly

Every action that doesn't damage the environment or deplete a resource is sustainable. Check out the Evolution Convertible Backpack that is made from scraps! 

Yes! The term sustainability is as simple as you just read. See it again: Every action that doesn't damage the environment or deplete a resource is sustainable

In today's world, about 1 billion people live in urban slums, and the World Bank presumes that the urban population in developing countries will double to 4 billion in the next 20 years. 

 

However, be it urban or rural community, SUSTAIN-ability becomes a watchword. They are both faced with conflict, crime, inequality, social exclusion, violence and fragility, and climate change and disaster risks.

What is a Sustainable Community?

It is a community that understands the interrelationship between economic, environmental, and social issues. It tackles them holistically and develops resilience strong enough to persist over generations, within a healthy environment, vibrant civic life, and a prosperous economy.

How can Sustainable Communities be achieved?

A specific guide for attaining the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations is seen in the ten targets and 15 indicators of Sustainable Development Goal 11 to realize inclusive, resilient, competitive, and sustainable cities and communities by 2030.

Features of Sustainable Communities 

Using the concept of Sustainable Cities and Communities from the World Bank's Urban, Disaster Risk Management, Resilience and Land Global Practice (GPURL) there are four key dimensions:

  1. In terms of cleanliness and efficiency, Sustainable Communities are environmentally sustainable.
  2. Describes Sustainable Communities that are well prepared for natural disasters, which are continually increasing in intensity and frequency due to climate change, thus helping them stay resilient to social, economic, and natural hazards.
  3. Sustainable Communities bring all dimensions of society and all groups of people, including the vulnerable and marginalized into their services, markets, and general development; in other words, they are inclusive communities.
  4. The final critical dimension of Sustainable Communities describes competitive communities that can stay productive and generate jobs for community members using the best inclusive methods.
Can a Sustainable Community be created? 

Oh Yes! Interestingly, every individual has to play a huge role to ensure SDG 11 is achievable. Here are some guides to creating a Sustainable Community: 

Waste Reduction: as simple as sorting waste from the point of generation and taking out recyclables, reduces the amount of waste that gets to landfills.

Supporting Local Businesses can drastically reduce your carbon footprint by eliminating shipping interests.

Buying and Promoting local produce also reduces freight costs and protects from uncessasary packaging and preservation during shipping.

Energy conservation encourages adaptation to renewable energy and clean fuels.

We compiled a good list a while back in our article: 25 Best Tips On Sustainable Living

Examples of Sustainable Communities

There are up to 10,000 upcoming Sustainable Communities and 400 Eco Villages around the world, including:

  • Los Angeles Ecovillage, California
  • Kufunda Village, Zimbabwe
  • Southern Life Community, China
  • Earthsong Eco-Neighbourhood, New Zealand
  • Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage, Missouri
  • World Hope Foundation, Nigeria

So... if you didn't find your community listed, it probably means you have a huge role to play to ensure it gets on the list in subsequent publications. 😊

Environmentalist and journalist WONNE Afronelly reports on municipal water systems, fisheries management and environmental sustainability issues as a writer for many years in Port Harcourt, Nigeria.