Sustainability in America's Cities: Creating the Green Metropolis

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Overview


"Sustainability" is more than the latest "green" buzzword. It represents a new way of viewing the interactions of human society and the natural world. Sustainability in America's Cities highlights how America's largest cities are acting to develop sustainable solutions to conflicts between development and environment.

 

As sustainability rises to the top of public policy agendas in American cities, it is also emerging as a new discipline in colleges and universities. Specifically designed for these educational programs, this is the first book to provide empirically based, multi-disciplinary case studies of sustainability policy, planning, and practice in action. It is also valuable for everyone who designs and implements sustainability initiatives, including policy makers, public sector and non-profit practitioners, and consultants.

 

Sustainability in America's Cities brings together academic and practicing professionals to offer firsthand insight into innovative strategies that cities have adopted in renewable energy and energy efficiency, climate change, green building, clean-tech and green jobs, transportation and infrastructure, urban forestry and sustainable food production. Case studies examine sustainability initiatives in a wide range of American cities, including San Francisco, Honolulu, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Milwaukee, New York City, Portland, Oregon and Washington D.C. The concluding chapter ties together the empirical evidence and recounts lessons learned for sustainability planning and policy.

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Editorial Reviews

The Dirt - Shannon Leahy

"The evidence these case studies offer is valuable because it leans more toward 'clear empirical arguments concerning what works and what doesn't in cities' actual experiences' than 'outright advocacy' for what should be done. Proven efficacy is critical to launching new initiatives in the U.S., particularly given the lack of a comprehensive national strategy for climate change has left cities with the daunting task of addressing the issue themselves. Many cities also lack the appropriate resources so can't make mistakes financing ineffective programs...The book clearly demonstrates that the sustainability movement in the U.S. is gaining support. However, progress is slow...Slavin is nevertheless optimistic in light of what the case studies have shown."
Journal of Planning and Education Research

 "The chapters in this book take an optimistic attitude that many readers will appreciate  in the current budget-constrained times... Learning from the sustainability cases in this book can lead municipalities, states, and regions to greater achievement in adapting and extending such practices. For that reason, and for the readable, well-written style. Sustainability in America's Cities: Creating the Green Metropolis is highly recommended for academics and planning practitioners."
Journal of Planning Education and Research

"The chapters in this book take an optimistic attitude that many readers will appreciate in the current budget-constrained times... Learning from the sustainability cases in this book can lead municipalities, states, and regions to greater achievement in adapting and extending such practices. For that reason, and for the readable, well-written style. Sustainability in America's Cities: Creating the Green Metropolis is highly recommended for academics and planning practitioners."
ASLA's The Dirt blog

"The evidence these case studies offer is valuable because it leans more toward 'clear empirical arguments concerning what works and what doesn't in cities' actual experiences' than 'outright advocacy' for what should be done. Proven efficacy is critical to launching new initiatives in the U.S., particularly given the lack of a comprehensive national strategy for climate change has left cities with the daunting task of addressing the issue themselves. Many cities also lack the appropriate resources so can't make mistakes financing ineffective programs...The book clearly demonstrates that the sustainability movement in the U.S. is gaining support. However, progress is slow...Slavin is nevertheless optimistic in light of what the case studies have shown."
Sustainable Communities

"... Sustainability in America's Cities, true to its promise, painstakingly details the history and actions taken by the cities analyzed. ... Overall, Sustainability in America's Cities provides an incredibly detailed account of the sustainability efforts in several major U.S. cities, providing a wealth of information to city planners interested in the efforts of these particular cities."
Journal of Planning Literature

"measured yet thought provoking...excellent"
Professor of City and Regional Planning, University of California, Berkeley - Robert Cervero

"This book is amazingly rich in its content and breadth— from wind energy production in Honolulu to urban forest restoration and greening food supplies in New York City. It does as much to back the theory of sustainable urbanism with hard numbers and convincing case commentary as any work to date. It also packs a powerful political message— green buildings, green transport, and green energy can translate into green jobs. It's a must-read for anyone who cares about charting a sustainable urban future."
President, CEO and Founding Chair, U.S. Green Building Council - Rick Fedrizzi

"Across America, cities are driving the innovative solutions we need to deliver the environmental, social and economic benefits of sustainability. Through a careful examination of some of the successes and failures of our urban initiatives, Sustainability in America's Cities provides timely lessons for those interested in making our buildings, cities, and planet more livable."
from the book's foreword - Kent E. Portney

"Cities' practices can be identified, but without some assessment of how well these practices work in different settings, prescriptions seem premature at best. . . . this book jumps into the void, providing detailed information heretofore not readily available."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781597267427
  • Publisher: Island Press
  • Publication date: 4/14/2011
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 304
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 9.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Matthew Slavin is founder and principal of Sustaingrup, developing clean energy technologies and sustainable building and aligning business and government leadership, goals and strategy to create a more sustainable future. His publications on energy, climate change and sustainability have been featured in leading professional journals and metropolitan newspapers.

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Table of Contents

Foreword Kent Portney ix

Acknowledgments xv

Chapter 1 The Rise of the Urban Sustainability Movement in America Matthew I. Slavin 1

Chapter 2 Strategic Climate Action Planning in Portland Matthew I. Slavin Kent Snyder 21

Chapter 3 Greening the Industrial District: Transforming Milwaukee's Menomonee Valley from a Blighted Brownfield into a Sustainable Place to Work and Play Christopher De Sousa 45

Chapter 4 Phoenix, the Role of the University, and the Politics of Green-Tech Jonathan Fink 69

Chapter 5 LEED in the Nation's Capitol: A Policy and Planning Perspective on Green Building in Washington, D.C Gerrit Knapp Amy E. Gardner Ralph Bennett Madlen Simon Cari Varnier 91

Chapter 6 The Greening of Mobility in San Francisco Aaron Golub Jason Henderson 113

Chapter 7 Wind, Waves, and Watts: Creating a Clean Energy Future for Honolulu Matthew I. Slavin Douglas A. Codiga Jason J. Zeller 133

Chapter 8 Clean Waters, Clean City: Sustainable Storm Water Management in Philadelphia Lynn Mandarano 157

Chapter 9 Toward a Sustainable New York City: Greening through Urban Forest Restoration P. Timon McPhearson 181

Chapter 10 Greening the Food Supply in New York Nevin Cohen Jennifer Obadia 205

Chapter 11 Where Sustainability Stands Now: Contemporary Trends and Future Prospects Matthew I. Slavin 231

References 247

Contributors 269

Index 277

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