According to some estimates, humanity has now passed the point at which city dwellers outnumber country dwellers. This simple fact encapsulates a multitude of historical trends and contentions, not the least being "is this sustainable"?
Energy, Cities and Sustainability aims to illuminate this question by tracing the evolution of the modern city, the energy sources that power it and the motivations behind increasing urbanisation. The book examines changing energy use across history, analysing the origins and significance of the Industrial Revolution to reveal how the modern city came into being. Transport, population size, housing, electricity use and growing consumption are each discussed, showing how the cultural aspects of energy use have influenced urban form in the developed world and developing countries. Finally, in contemplating the future, it is considered whether this model of modern urban life is sustainable.
This book is a valuable resource for researchers, academics and policy-makers in the areas of planning, energy policy and environment and sustainability.
Introduction 1. Energy and urban formation in the pre-modern city 2. The great transition: from solar sources to fossil fuels 3. The modern city emerges 4. 20th century transformers: wars, suburbs, commodities 5. Critiques of progress and ideas of sustainability 6. Shifting production and consumption: developing economies 7. Speculations on urban form, energy and sustainability