Eco-cities: Effective or Expensive?

By Sky News at 10:05 AM 5/31/2020 (PDT)

In the ever-evolving discussion centered on providing adequate housing for slum dwellers, the delegates of the US and China engaged in a fascinating debate about the use of eco-cities. Upon the proposition made by the US delegate about core housing, the delegate of China offered an alternate solution: the incorporation of eco-cities. Reporters agree with the US in viewing the eco-cities as an expensive, inefficient plan, but China has stated otherwise.

The delegate of China began by explaining how the construction of eco-cities involves renewable energy sources. As a solution currently implemented in China, the delegate was confident in reporting how each eco-city serves about 3,500 people. When questioned about the amount of funding, China pointed out that since eco-cities are supported and funded by other nations, the rent for residents would not be exceedingly high. She went on to add that the sustainable energy means would make eco-cities less expensive in the long-run when compared to less-sustainable households.

In contrast to the views of China, the delegate of the US argued that if eco-cities were to be built on the land of current urban slums, then it would displace large amounts of slum-dwellers if they cannot afford the rent of eco-cities. When slum-dwellers are displaced to the outskirts of cities, transportation costs and costs of amenities are extremely high; forcing them to move back to living in urban slums.

In response, the delegate of China broadened her view by declaring that the committee needs to focus on long-term solutions, such as eco-cities. She stated that since eco-cities in China are currently being adapted into large cities, the same principle could be applied to slums. The delegate suggested the use of international governmental organizations that analyze the success of eco-cities and report back with their findings to periodically evaluate the measures taken.

While both delegates have brought up notable points throughout committee sessions, it does seem to look like eco-cities may be an unfeasible option, especially if it displaces the already-struggling slum-dwellers.

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