State of the Planet

News from the Columbia Climate School

Ensuring a Prosperous China by 2049 and Providing Best Practices for Ghana

A busy Street in Accra, GhanaTwo new gifts from donor Winnington Group of Hong Kong are helping support the Millennium Cities Initiative and the Earth Institute’s new China 2049 project, which seeks to answer the following crucial questions: What will the Chinese economy look like one hundred years after the establishment of the People’s Republic of China?  How can public and private stakeholders in China plan now so that by mid-century the country will be economically dynamic, socially harmonious, and environmentally sustainable?  Given the challenges Accra, Ghana is facing today in urban infrastructure, population growth, energy consumption and water issues—what lessons can Accra learn from China?

The China 2049 project was started in March 2009 by China’s National Development and Reform Commission, the Earth Institute, Columbia University and the Brookings Institution. The goal of the project is to conduct cutting-edge research to guide China’s growth and formulate broad administrative and economic plans for China with a vision toward a sustainable 2049.

ghana-211The Millennium Cities Initiative, an urban counterpart to the Millennium Villages project is assisting selected cities across sub-Saharan Africa in their efforts to achieve the Millennium Development Goals.

The Winnington Group’s first gift to the China 2049 project will support a comparative study between New York City and Shanghai on urban development.  The study will examine water, energy, pollution, and public health issues and investigate how China might learn from New York city (and vice versa) to address the sustainable challenges facing the country.

The second gift will support a joint comparative study between China 2049 and MCI on Chinese experiences in urban development and the Millennium city of Accra, Ghana. This second study will focus on sustainable infrastructure, population growth, public health, energy consumption and water issues, and will be used to inform urban development in both China and Ghana, and tackle the challenges China and Ghana are facing in their economic and social development.

Banner featuring a collage of extreme heat images.

Recent record-breaking heat waves have affected communities across the world. The Extreme Heat Workshop will bring together researchers and practitioners to advance the state of knowledge, identify community needs, and develop a framework for evaluating risks with a focus on climate justice. Register by June 15