Photo: NLE Film/Sven Erik Knoff
Photo: NLE Film/Sven Erik Knoff

A Circular City kickstart

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Today's linear use-and-throw model is a massive resource problem. It requires rethinking of everything we produce, build and use. The Evolve Arena conference on in April, focuses on what small and large measures can be implemented to make cities, buildings and people more sustainable.

Let’s start at home

One way of showing that your town prioritize a circular lifestyle, is to give new life to old buildings, or reuse materials. For instance, The Norwegian Trade Fair Foundation recently announced that they want to rebuild its Spektrum in Oslo. The 360.000 brick stones on the existing walls were made by the last brickwork in the capital and equals the number of citizens Oslo had in 1990 when it was built. If approved, the original bricks will be reused on the new Spektrum’s façade and interior. Smart? Well, yes! In this way, industrial history and city culture is preserved and the same time, one avoids unnecessary material consumption.

Take care of those golden drops

Unnecessary material consumption on public and private buildings is perhaps something you and the city architects need to ponder about. However, an area that doesn’t need pondering at all, is water consumption. Most people recognize that our golden drops are a limited resource. As a consequence, we are more open to solutions on how to save water.

Some cities have already taken action. In October, Oslo advised people to e.g. pee and brush their teeth in the shower. And in Los Angeles, landscape architects are now replacing thirsty, imported plants like palm trees with native and drought-resistant flora. At the Evolve Arena conference solutions on how to make circular cities will be adressed by experts and thought-leaders within the field. Does your city have strategies on how to tempt citizens to save water? Or how to limit unnecessary material consumption?

From climate budgets to area budgets – anyone better?

When it comes to water and energy, it’s easy for private households and cities to look at the numbers and keep track of consumption. Oslo has taken it one step further; it introduced climate budgets in 2017. In short, every city council has to make a budget for their own department in a one-year- perspective. They have to keep track of e.g. pollution, consumption and waste. Surely you have heard about new, green areas popping up, parking spaces disappearing, the introduction of city bikes and car-free streets in Oslo? All done to make the capital more human, sustainable and greener for its citizens.

Using the same principle as when Oslo is making their climate budget, Flakstad in Lofoten will be first one out in Norway to make area budgets. So, what’s that? If you’re going to expand in Flakstad, you have to downsize somewhere else so that nature can take back the areas it previously lost. While the mayor of Flakstad says it’s to preserve biological natural diversity, others argue that in a long-term perspective, the initiative could hinder business development.

Whether you find climate budgets, area budgets or water and energy consumption (or perhaps city planning as a whole) interesting, join us at the Evolve Arena conference 21 – 22. April 2021! We’ll broaden your mind and present the crucial pieces you need to solve your own city’s puzzle of the circular way of living.

Sources:
NRK.no
E24.no

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