Keeping our cities livable during heatwaves will become a huge challenge in the coming decades, but many cities are already showing how they try to keep their heads cool. Also in this month’s digest: some of the most innovative sustainable alternatives to traditional building materials and a look at the future of glass construction in today’s warmer world.
7 cities that came up with innovative solutions to tackle heatwaves
Heatwaves have been dominating global headlines this summer. Rural environments were greatly affected by the record heat, with failed crops, dried up rivers and burned down forests, but the extreme temperatures also impact life in our cities. Urban infrastructures such as asphalt roads and concrete buildings tend to absorb the heat and release it back into the streets. As a result, cities are the hottest places to be during a blistering heatwave. But city councils around the world are finding creative ways to do something about it and make life easier for all residents.
The World Economic Forum has listed seven examples of cities that came up with smart and sustainable solutions to keep their streets livable during extremely hot summers. By painting the streets white, creating ‘cool islands’ or planting millions of tree canopies, cities like Paris, Seville and Abu Dhabi are offering their citizens a much-needed cooldown. Discover all seven examples here.
Ten innovative and sustainable alternatives to common building materials.
Reducing its ecological footprint has become one of the construction industry's most important ambitions. Aware of the sector’s huge impact on the environment, many architects, designers, scientists and startups are developing sustainable alternatives to traditional building materials, determined to get those emission numbers down.
By using biological organisms, such as algae or fungi, or available resources like sand, soil or demolition waste, it’s perfectly possible to create materials that are completely carbon-neutral or even carbon-negative. Innovations include mycelium-based acoustic panels and furniture, concrete made out of desert sand and a biologically grown limestone inspired by coral reefs. Read the full story here.
How does glass construction fit in a warmer world?
Does glass still have a bright future in today’s overheating world? The current climate crisis is making us rethink the way we design our buildings, with a strong focus on keeping them cool. Does that mean glass manufacturers should be worried? Not at all: glass is more versatile than ever and has proven to be extremely efficient when it comes to keeping the heat out. Glass in construction is and will remain a great combination of comfort, aesthetics and energy-efficiency.
Manufacturers are continuously taking glass production to a higher level. Thanks to innovative technologies like double-glazed, glare control reflective and filtering glass, there’s no need to panic when another heatwave is knocking on the door. Read the full article here.