Water and Energy Futures in an Urbanized Asia: Sustaining the Tiger

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Erik Roswell Peterson, Rachel Posner
Center for Strategic and International Studies, 2007 - History - 56 pages
Urbanization is taking the world by storm. In the last 107 years, the proportion of humanity living in cities has skyrocketed from 13 to 50 percent. This trend can be expected to continue. The United Nations predicts that 60 percent of the global population will live in cities by 2030. This implies major shifts in how we govern, allocate natural resources, manage infrastructure, conduct business, and much more.Pacific Asia—the region encompassing China and its neighbors in East and Southeast Asia—is a key driver of this global urban transition. Within the next decades, the region will account for about one-third of the world's urban population growth, increasing by about 750 million people in absolute terms. By 2025, the world is expected to have an urban population of 5 billion people, of which 30 percent will reside in Pacific Asia's cities.Inherent tensions between economic development and poverty alleviaŽtion on the one hand and environmental sustainability on the other are widely acknowledged. As we look to the future, how these issues intersect in China will have enormous significance for developments in that country as well as around the entire world. This report explores the complex simultaneous phenomena of rapid urbanization, resource manageŽment, and the broader public policy challenges and opportunities in Asia. A number of compelling questions arise: What are the most promising technological innovations to promote environmentally sustainable economic growth? What factors are most significant in driving change? How are priorities assigned, and how are those priorities changing? How are the players changing? What kinds of policies, regulations, and other governance tools help identify trajectories that at once promote economic development and address enviŽronmental degradation? To answer these and other related questions, CSIS sought out experts from nongovernmental organizations and academia to examine dynamics in the region and water and energy issues more broadly.

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Contents

A Clash of Innovation and
8
Economic Growth and Climate Change
20
Lessons Learned from the Asia Foundations
42
Copyright

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About the author (2007)

Erik R. Peterson is director of the Global Strategy Institute, as well as senior vice president of CSIS. Rachel Posner is a research associate with the Global Strategy Institute.

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