“Despairing on Earth Day? Read This” | New York Times | Richard Conniff

Opinion | Despairing on Earth Day? Read This - The New York Times
A view of Dhaka, Bangladesh. Asia is urbanising more quickly than
any other region in the world, and 64 per cent of Asia will be urban by 2050
Somewhere I'm sure I've written about the seemingly counter-intuitive fact that urbanisation is good for the environment. Mainly because city dwellers emit less carbon dioxide per capita (more concentrated transport). 
And, as described in this article, child mortality in cities is less than the country so people, in time, have fewer children. 
Mr. Walston sipped his beer and listed what he called "the four pillars" of conservation in the modern era — (1) a stabilized human population, (2) increasingly concentrated in urban areas, (3) able to escape extreme poverty, and (4) with a shared understanding of nature and the environment — "and all four are happening right now." He singled out the trend toward urbanization as the biggest driver of environmental progress, bigger perhaps than all the conservation efforts undertaken by governments and environmental groups alike.

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