How Cities Will Lead the Energy Future
At previous congresses, the role of cities in energy creation, consumption, and activism was rarely discussed. This year, a new report hoped to change that. Written by Arup at the behest of event organizer the World Energy Council, the document points out that cities consume the majority of the world’s energy and house the majority of its people, but have little control over how energy is produced, distributed, or used. Urban areas matter in global energy discussions for a simple reason: they use almost two-thirds of the world’s energy and account for more than 70% of all greenhouse gases. Buildings — most of which are located, of course, in cities — consume 51% of the world’s nonindustrial energy. And cities will become even more relevant to global energy planning as urban centers grow. According to the United Nations, two-thirds of the world’s population will live in cities by 2050.