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On September 20, New York City (NYC)’s “iconic” buildings were lit up in green for the launch of the week-long global Climate Week NYC, which coincided with the United Nations General Assembly session. The summit was the first big one (virtual) in this Covid-19 year, and was held in the backdrop of an ongoing global conversation on the need for the world to chart a new green development path.
While globally, cities are struggling to tackle the impact of the climate crisis (with heat waves, cold waves, flash floods and cyclones among others issues), many have also become hubs of climate action. They are thinking of innovative ways to reduce temperatures and make their urban environments sustainable and liveable for their residents by designing and constructing buildings that need less energy to run and employ passive means of climate control. For example, Chicago and Toronto are building rooftop gardens; Milan is building vertical forests; and Madsar City in Abu Dhabi is building houses close to each other so that they can provide shading to public walkways, and also prioritising walking and cycling over polluting cars.

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