Green Cities in Pakistan
A city that is designed and developed on environment-friendly principles is called as sustainable, eco-friendly or green city. Green city is developed by the effective use of resources like raw materials, water and energy. Green city in this way helps to save the valuable resources for the present and future generations. Green city also minimizes the damage to the environment by reducing pollution. Green cities in Pakistan and across the world are need of the hour due to the rising pollution, global warming and energy & water shortage. Green city movement gained momentum after Hurricane Sandy in 2012. New York and New Jersey were without electricity & food supply for many days, as both cities receive these supplies from 100’s of miles away. China is currently developing dozens of sustainable cities.
Green cities are developed by:-
1-Using recyclable materials like timber, local stones and bricks for construction.
2-Using green energy in form of solar energy.
3-Efficient use of water. Water is becoming scarce and we need to preserve it. Green cities are designed to store the rain water and use it after recycling.
4-Reducing air & water pollution. To control the air pollution green cities have car-free developments and rely on public transportation system. Whereas, water pollution is controlled by the efficient disposal of wastage.
5-Controlling the temperature. Green cities control the temperature by growing trees and greenery. Roof gardens also help to reduce temperature.
6-Encouraging the people to use recycled materials.
Pakistani cities are not environment friendly. Cities are overcrowded due to the rapid urbanization in Pakistan. Pakistani cities are facing the problems like high level of air & water pollution, rising temperature, waste management problems, vanishing greenery due to the fast commercialization and electricity & water shortage.There are some efforts to develop housing schemes in Pakistan on sustainable development principles, but these efforts are on limited scale. If we keenly observe the mega cities of Pakistan, Karachi and Lahore, they look like large slum agglomerations. Until now there are no efforts to build zero carbon housing in Pakistan.
Green cities in Pakistan can be developed by taking these initiatives:-
1-Pakistan needs to use recyclable building materials, so that valuable natural resources can be saved for the coming generations.
2-Pakistan is facing the worst blackout. Electricity shortage in Pakistan can be solved by using solar energy. Solar energy can also be used for cooking and we can save valuable natural gas.
3-World is facing the water scarcity. USA is facing the worst droughts of the century due to shallow water blackout. Saudi Arabia will stop producing rice and wheat crops due to the shortage of water. Pakistan will face water shortage by 2025. To solve this issue we need to design city roads and buildings in a way that they store the rain storm water. This water can be used after recycling.
4-Pakistan has high level of air & water pollution. Air pollution in Pakistani cities can be solved by providing the comfortable & efficient public transportation system. People should be encouraged to travel by buses and trains rather than cars. This will also help to solve the traffic congestion. Building green homes in Pakistan that have zero carbon emission, will also help to reduce air pollution. Whereas, water pollution is caused by mixing of factory waste in water. This issue can be controlled by proper waste disposal management.
5-People should be encouraged to use the recycled materials. This will help to save the valuable resources as waste can be utilized after recycling.
6-To reduce the temperature we need to increase the green area in Pakistani cities. Green area can be increased by planting trees. We can also develop vertical agriculture farms in our cities. That will help to reduce the temperature and our cities would be food sufficient.