Philippines Plans Manhattan-Sized Green City
The Philippines has an ambitious plan to deal with its capital's pollution woes—build an entirely new, sustainable city 75 miles from Manila.
The proposed New Clark City will be larger than Manhattan and house up to two million people, Business Insider UK reported May 9.
The project's current price tag is $14 billion, and it will be funded through private-public partnerships.
New Clark City will feature innovative green technology like electric, driverless cars and buildings designed to be energy efficient and conserve water. Two-thirds of the city's area will be devoted to farms and green spaces in an attempt to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.
The New Clark City website describes it as "A destination where nature, lifestyle and business, education, and industry converge into a global city based on principles of sustainability."
The city is also designed to be resilient to disasters caused by climate change. At 184 feet above sea level, it should be largely safe from flooding. Further, the green space means that rivers have room to expand without flooding infrastructure, the Thomson Reuters Foundation reported in March.
"The objective is not simply to build a disaster-resilient city, but rather a successful, innovative and economically competitive city that is also disaster-resilient," RAND Corporation researcher Benjamin Preston told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.
The project is being developed by the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA), owned by the Philippines' government, and the Singapore urban planning firm Surbana Jurong.
Surbana Jurong CEO Heang Fine Wong told CNBC that the city would act as a "twin city" to Manila.
Manila's Pasig River is so polluted that it can only support janitor fish and water lilies, according to Sciencing. Air pollution in Manila is also 70 percent higher than the World Health Organization's recommended safe levels, the Philippines' Department of Environment and Natural Resources reported.
According to the Thomson Reuters foundation, it is also one of the densest cities in the world, so experts think the construction of New Clark City will relieve pressure on the capital and allow it to focus on making itself more sustainable and resilient as well.
"(It) has the potential to take pressure off Manila so that Manila can also invest in building a more resilient future," Lauren Sorkin, director for Asia-Pacific with 100 Resilient Cities, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.
According to BCDA President Vince Dizon, the government is working to develop the new city as quickly as possible while making sure it retains its green design.
"We need to strike a balance between fast-paced development that maximises value for the private sector, and protecting open spaces and making the city walkable, green and resilient," Dizon told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.Currently, the BCDA is working to complete the New Clark City sports facility in time for the Philippines to host the Southeast Asian Games in 2019, breaking ground on the complex April 25, the New Clark City website reported.
At first glance, you wouldn't think avocados and almonds could harm bees; but a closer look at how these popular crops are produced reveals their potentially detrimental effect on pollinators.
Migratory beekeeping involves trucking millions of bees across the U.S. to pollinate different crops, including avocados and almonds. Timothy Paule II / Pexels / CC0<p>According to <a href="https://www.fromthegrapevine.com/israeli-kitchen/beekeeping-how-to-keep-bees" target="_blank">From the Grapevine</a>, American avocados also fully depend on bees' pollination to produce fruit, so farmers have turned to migratory beekeeping as well to fill the void left by wild populations.</p><p>U.S. farmers have become reliant upon the practice, but migratory beekeeping has been called exploitative and harmful to bees. <a href="https://www.cnn.com/2019/05/10/health/avocado-almond-vegan-partner/index.html" target="_blank">CNN</a> reported that commercial beekeeping may injure or kill bees and that transporting them to pollinate crops appears to negatively affect their health and lifespan. Because the honeybees are forced to gather pollen and nectar from a single, monoculture crop — the one they've been brought in to pollinate — they are deprived of their normal diet, which is more diverse and nourishing as it's comprised of a variety of pollens and nectars, Scientific American reported.</p><p>Scientific American added how getting shuttled from crop to crop and field to field across the country boomerangs the bees between feast and famine, especially once the blooms they were brought in to fertilize end.</p><p>Plus, the artificial mass influx of bees guarantees spreading viruses, mites and fungi between the insects as they collide in midair and crawl over each other in their hives, Scientific American reported. According to CNN, some researchers argue that this explains why so many bees die each winter, and even why entire hives suddenly die off in a phenomenon called colony collapse disorder.</p>
Avocado and almond crops depend on bees for proper pollination. FRANK MERIÑO / Pexels / CC0<p>Salazar and other Columbian beekeepers described "scooping up piles of dead bees" year after year since the avocado and citrus booms began, according to Phys.org. Many have opted to salvage what partial colonies survive and move away from agricultural areas.</p><p>The future of pollinators and the crops they help create is uncertain. According to the United Nations, nearly half of insect pollinators, particularly bees and butterflies, risk global extinction, Phys.org reported. Their decline already has cascading consequences for the economy and beyond. Roughly 1.4 billion jobs and three-quarters of all crops around the world depend on bees and other pollinators for free fertilization services worth billions of dollars, Phys.org noted. Losing wild and native bees could <a href="https://www.ecowatch.com/wild-bees-crop-shortage-2646849232.html" target="_self">trigger food security issues</a>.</p><p>Salazar, the beekeeper, warned Phys.org, "The bee is a bioindicator. If bees are dying, what other insects beneficial to the environment... are dying?"</p>
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