Posted by Indraneel Kumar
Climate change is a much accepted and scientifically proven fact within the development planning framework. The way we grow our cities and communities have an irreversible impact on the climate. However, there is a lack of tools and know how, which look into mitigating climate change impacts through sound urban and regional planning.
A recently published report from The Lincoln Institute of Land Policy addresses this much needed resource- a tool box for urban planners to address the climate change issue. While arrangement of land uses and transportation system at a community level does impact household travel patterns and hence the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, the study finds that the climate change should be addressed at the local as well as regional levels. The report includes four case studies and shows how the tools have been used to inform policy decisions at the regional level.
Research indicates that land use and transportation strategies can mitigate GHG emissions substantially. The report includes an example of Portland (Oregon) metropolitan area, where by utilizing growth management and growth control strategies and by providing mass transportation options, such as transit, the GHG emissions are retained at the level of 1990 whereas the population has increased by 16 percent. The report also includes a research The Vulcan Project by Purdue University, which estimates carbon dioxide emissions at a raster grid-cell level for the whole of USA. Read the whole report here.