Rapidly Developing Cities and the Abortive Action of Efforts to Combat Climate Change, with Special Reference to IGAD Cities

By Sharaf Eldin Ibrahim Bannaga.

Published by The International Journal of Climate Change: Impacts and Responses

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Rapid urban growth, primarily due to the effects of globalization, is the most significant demographic phenomenon in human history. It has substantially increased the consumption of fossil-fuels and the resulting climate change since cities are the prime source of GHG emission. The situation is aggravated in developing countries by increases in poverty, desertion of fertile rural lands, deficient transport systems and urban maladministration. However, developing countries are also highly vulnerable to climate variability. They are affected by desertification; in Sudan, for example, 72% of the country’s total area lies within the climatic frame of desertification. Indeed much of the fighting in Darfur is
due to droughts and low crops yields. Post Kyoto UN meeting have not been successful in slowing the pace or reducing the magnitude of climate change. The last meeting, COP 16, in Cancún last December concluded with a deal committing all major economies to GHG cuts. The deal may restore some faith in the UN process, but it does not reduce temperatures as needed. If preventive measures are not imposed to control fast urbanization, climate change efforts will be aborted because developing cities are growing rapidly and are expected soon to emit very large volumes of GHG—more even than what developed cities are generating. In fact, China has already surpassed the USA in GHG emission. Therefore, global bias policies
that encourage fast urban growth must be revised and replaced by policies that reverse the population
movement towards cities, improve public transport and alleviate poverty while restoring rural life to
support reforestation and enhance eco-agriculture.

Keywords: Rapid Urbanisation, Developing Cities, GHGs, Climate, Change, Rural, Migration, Deserti- fication, Global, Policies, Rural, Development

The International Journal of Climate Change: Impacts and Responses, Volume 3, Issue 2, pp.197-218. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 3.469MB).

Dr. Sharaf Eldin Ibrahim Bannaga

General Manager, Bannaga Consult, Khartoum, Khartoum, Sudan

I graduated as a civil engineer from the University of Khartoum in 1971 and pursued advanced studies at Loughborough University, England, where I acquired my Msc and Phd in 1977 in environmental engineering disciplines and immediately joined the international engineering firm, Gibb and Partners, England before returning to Sudan University as a lecturer. In 1979 I worked for the Saudi government and the UN as an expert. In 1989 I joined the Khartoum government as a State Minister for Housing and Engineering Infrastructure and left office in 2001. Since then I have been teaching at universities and running my consulting firm “Bannaga Consult”. In addition, I chair the Sudanese Consulting Firms Council and two local NGOs. My firm provides services in spatial planning, architecture and engineering designs in addition to our outstanding expertise in the field of environmental pollution control, urban networking and engineering infrastructure. I have made substantial contributions in environmental protection, the most prominent of which was the Greater Khartoum restructuring and the spatial organization of its physical block. I have also published many research projects and technical papers and have written four books published by the Swiss Federal Institute on issues related to the built environment.

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