Realizing the Ecological city? Ecology for the city and the Ecocity Challenge
Name of Speaker:
The core objective of this lecture was finding out the activities carried out in cities, which have led to its environmental destruction. The lecture explored the fact that this destruction is because of certain human behavior. It also spoke about the possible solutions to this problem. The lecture also mentioned how cities came to be and what caused their growth.
The lecture stated that cities sprouted because of agricultural activities. The improvement of agriculture from the use of hand-made tools to using of new levels of technology led to development of industries, as a result, civilization was experienced, and cities started growing. The lecture stated that cities, just like the tropical rainforests, run on energy.
This energy is said to come from the sun in two forms, one being through radiation and the other through fossil sunlight, which is concentrated in plants and animals that died long ago. Radiation causes all the green plants and trees to grow. A combination of these two energies makes the city grow and flourish. The speaker however said that, with the industrial revolution, most of the fossil fuels, which are non-renewable, are burnt to produce hydrocarbons. Trees and plants are also being cleared to provide space for new industries and residential areas, leading to deforestation. As a result, the amount of energy required in these cities is depleted, and instead excessive heat is emitted. These fossil fuels, being non-renewable, have made the government come up with new sources of energy such as nuclear atomic energy, a big threat to cities.
The speaker suggested the use of renewable sources to produce energy such as the use of wind, biomass, direct sunlight, hydroelectric and geothermal power. The speaker also mentioned that cities are necessary for psychological and social living. However, this is not so since they are considered to be one of the most unhealthy places to live due to the pollution from industries. He stated that the air city dwellers breathe is toxic, and the products they eat are dangerous. He suggests that most city dwellers should visit the countryside more often to improve their lifestyles, as foods are considered fresher and healthier there.
From the lecture given, the city is in real danger of losing its value, ecologically. With the continuous use of fossil fuels, cutting down of trees and using nuclear energy. It is true that if people do not take care of their environment, there shall be threats, which include diseases such as Skin cancer due to the UV rays from the sun.
From the lecture, the problem of cutting down trees can be solved by planting two other trees after cutting one. That instead of using nuclear energy, which has serious effects, other sources of energy that the speaker suggested such as wind, biomass and hydroelectric power should be used. As city dwellers, instead of feeding of manufactured foods, people should eat the foods that are directly from the farm like fruits and vegetables. People should also use the knowledge acquired from the lecture to sensitize others on the importance of taking care of cities. In this manner, cities shall be saved.
The lecture should have given concrete examples of the cities in the USA, which have adversely been affected by ecological change. Through this, more information has been imparted on the society. Apart from that, the Lecture was well attended and the speaker very lively. Everything he spoke about was related to cities.