Advertisement

Fostering Transformative Climate Adaptation and Mitigation in the African City: Opportunities and Constraints of Urban Planning

  • Susan ParnellEmail author
Chapter
Part of the Future City book series (FUCI, volume 4)

Abstract

Mainstreaming climate resilient strategy into the systems of urban design, construction and management has to take seriously both climate adaptation and mitigation in shifting the practices of urban planning if the interests of the urban poor are to be advanced. Because of the way that urban poverty has been conceived, the adaptation agenda tends to focus on small-scale household interventions rather than strategic spatial planning, development controls and enforcement. These city scale planning actions are more closely tied to the climate mitigation agenda, something that has had little traction in African cities where planning is weak and often considered part of the urban problem. Few professions have such a poor reputation or are so badly understood as town planning, and this is nowhere more so than in the fragile African context where illegitimate colonial legacies, weak local government and low levels of professional capacity make embedding the climate agenda into the planning regime especially difficult. However, pro-poor planning and planners cannot be bypassed if a sustainable city, rather than a set of projects, is to be promoted. In an effort to make clear the barriers and opportunities to a transformative climate agenda, this chapter sets out the importance of rethinking poverty in less individualised ways, thus enabling the reform of urban planning practices that are typically found in African cites and through which institutional change might be realised.

Keywords

Poverty Urban planning City-scale action 

References

  1. ADB (2011) The middle of the pyramid: dynamics of the middle class in Africa, Chief Economist Complex, African Development Bank, Market Brief, April 2011Google Scholar
  2. Anguelovski I, Carmin J (2011) Something borrowed, everything new: innovation and institutionalization in urban climate governance. Curr Opin Environ Sustain 3:169–175CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Ballard R (2013) Geographies of development II: cash transfers and the reinvention of development for the poor. Prog Hum Geogr 37(6):811–821CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bank AD (2010) Focused action: priorities for addressing climate change in Asia and the Pacific. ADB, ManilaGoogle Scholar
  5. Berrisford S (2014) The challenge of urban planning law reform in African cities. In: Parnell S, Pieterse E (eds) Africa’s urban revolution. Zed Books Ltd, London, pp 167–183Google Scholar
  6. Bicknell J, Dodman D, Satterthwaite D (2009) Adapting cities to climate change: understanding and addressing the development challenges. Earthscan, LondonGoogle Scholar
  7. Blanco H, Alberti M, Olshansky R, Chang S, Wheeler SM, Randolph J, Watson V (2009) Shaken, shrinking, hot, impoverished and informal: emerging research agendas in planning. Prog Plan 72(4):195–250CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Brand P, Dávila JD (2011) Mobility innovation at the urban margins: Medellín’s metrocables. City 15(6):647–661CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Brenner N, Madden DJ, Wachsmuth D (2011) Assemblage urbanism and the challenges of critical urban theory. City 15(2):225–240CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Bulkeley H, Betsill M (2013) Revisiting the urban politics of climate change. Environ Polit 22(1):136–154CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Carmin J, Anguelovski I, Roberts D (2012) Urban climate adaptation in the global south: planning in an emerging policy domain. J Plan Educ Res 32(1):18–32CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Cartwright A, Parnell S, Oelofse G, Ward S (eds) (2012) Climate change at the city scale: impacts, mitigation and adaptation in Cape Town. Routledge, AbingdonGoogle Scholar
  13. Elmqvist T, Redman CL, Barthel S, Costanza R (eds) (2013) Urbanization, biodiversity and ecosystem services: challenges and opportunities: a global assessment. SpringerOpen, New York. doi: 10.1007/978-94-007-7088-1_2
  14. Frayne B, Moser CO, Ziervogel G (2012) Climate change, assets and food security in Southern African cities. Earthscan, AbingdonGoogle Scholar
  15. Graham S, Marvin S (2001) Splintering urbanism: networked infrastructures, technological mobilities and the urban condition. Routledge, LondonCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Hodson M, Marvin S (2010) Can cities shape socio-technical transitions and how would we know if they were? Res Policy 39(4):477–485CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Hodson M, Marvin S (2013) Green cities: position paper, Unpublished. Mistra Urban FuturesGoogle Scholar
  18. Hunt A, Watkiss P (2011) Climate change impacts and adaptation in cities: a review of the literature. Clim Chang 104(1):13–49CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) (2012) Special report on managing the risks of extreme events and disasters to advance climate change adaptation (SREX). In: Field CB, Barros V, Stocker TF, Qin D, Dokken DJ, Ebi KL, Mastrandrea MD, Mach KJ, Plattner G-K, Allen SK, Tignor M, Midgley PM (eds) Cambridge University Press, Cambridge/New York. Available via http://ipcc-wg2.gov/SREX/images/uploads/SREX-All_FINAL.pdf. Accessed 5 Feb 2014
  20. Jaglin S (2014) Regulating service delivery in southern cities: rethinking urban heterogeneity. In: Parnell S, Oldfield S (eds) A Routledge handbook of cities of the global south. Routledge, London, pp 343–446Google Scholar
  21. Lawhon M, Patel Z (2013) Scalar politics and local sustainability: rethinking governance and justice in an era of political and environmental change. Environ Plan C 31(6):1048–1062CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Lewis Y, Jooste M (2012) Opportunities and challenges in establishing a low-carbon zone in the Western Cape Province. In: Cartwright A, Parnell S, Oelofse G, Ward S (eds) Climate change at the city scale: impacts, mitigation and adaptation in Cape Town. Routledge, Abingdon, pp 99–121Google Scholar
  23. Martine G, McGranahan G (eds) (2014) Urban growth in emerging economies: lessons from the BRICS. Routledge, LondonGoogle Scholar
  24. Martine G, McGranahan G, Montgomery M, Fernandez-Castilla R (eds) (2008) The new global frontier: urbanization, poverty and the environment in the 21st century. Earthscan, LondonGoogle Scholar
  25. Mitlin D, Satterthwaite D (2013) Urban poverty in the global south: scale and nature. Routledge, LondonGoogle Scholar
  26. Moser CO (1998) The asset vulnerability framework: reassessing urban poverty reduction strategies. World Dev 26(1):1–19CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Moser C, Satterthwaite D (2008) Towards pro-poor adaptation to climate change in urban centres of low- and middle-income countries, Human settlements discussion paper series. Human Settlements Group and Climate Change Group: International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED), LondonGoogle Scholar
  28. Myers GA (2011) African cities: alternative visions of urban theory and practice. Zed Books Ltd, LondonGoogle Scholar
  29. Napier M, Berrisford S, Kihato S, McGaffen R, Royson L (2013) Trading places: accessing land in African cities. African Minds, Somerset WestGoogle Scholar
  30. Parnell S, Pieterse E (2014) Africa’s urban revolution. Zed Books Ltd, LondonGoogle Scholar
  31. Parnell S, Robinson J (2012) (Re)theorizing cities from the global south: looking beyond neoliberalism. Urban Geogr 33(4):593–617CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Parnell S, Simon D, Vogel C (2007) Global environmental change: conceptualizing the growing challenge for cities in poor countries. Area 39(3):357–369CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Pelling M (2010) Adaptation to climate change: from resilience to transformation. Routledge, LondonGoogle Scholar
  34. Pieterse E (2008) City futures: confronting the crisis of urban development. Zed Books Ltd, LondonGoogle Scholar
  35. Pieterse E (2014) Filling the void: an agenda for tackling Africa’s urbanisation. In: Parnell S, Pieterse E (eds) Africa’s urban revolution. Zed Books Ltd, London, pp 200–220Google Scholar
  36. Pieterse E, Hyman K (2014) Disjunctures between urban infrastructure, finance and affordability. In: Parnell S, Oldfield S (eds) A Routledge handbook of cities of the global south. Routledge, London, pp 191–205Google Scholar
  37. Rakodi C, Lloyd-Jones T (eds) (2002) Urban livelihoods: a people-centred approach to reducing poverty. Earthscan, LondonGoogle Scholar
  38. Revi A (2009) Climate change risk: an adaptation and mitigation agenda for Indian cities. In: Bicknell J, Dodman D, Satterthwaite D (eds) Adapting cities to climate change: understanding and addressing the development challenges. Earthscan, London/New York, pp 311–338Google Scholar
  39. Rosenzweig C, Solecki WD, Hammer SA, Mehrotra S (eds) (2011) Climate change and cities: first assessment report of the Urban Climate Change Research Network. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  40. Sánchez-Rodríguez R, Seto KC, Simon D, Solecki WD, Kraas F, Laumann G (2005) Science plan urbanization and global environmental change, IHPD report 15. International Human Dimensions Programme on Global Environmental Change, BonnGoogle Scholar
  41. Satterthwaite D, Mitlin D (2013) Reducing urban poverty in the global south. Routledge, LondonGoogle Scholar
  42. Satterthwaite D, Huq S, Reid H, Pelling M, Romero Lankao P (2009) Adapting to climate change in urban areas: the possibilities and constraints in low- and middle-income nations. In: Bicknell J, Dodman D, Satterthwaite D (eds) Adapting cities to climate change: understanding and addressing the development challenges. Earthscan, London/New York, pp 1–47Google Scholar
  43. Sen A (1999) Development as freedom. Oxford University Press, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  44. Seto K, Güneralp B, Hutyra LR (2012) Global forecasts of urban expansion to 2030 and direct impacts on biodiversity and carbon pools. Proc Natl Acad Sci 109(40):16083–16088. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1211658109 CrossRefPubMedCentralPubMedGoogle Scholar
  45. Silver J (2014) Locating urban retrofitting across three BRICS cities: exploring the retrofit landscapes of Sao Paulo, Mumbai and Cape Town. In: Urban retrofitting for sustainability: mapping the transition to 2050. Routledge, AbingdonGoogle Scholar
  46. Simon D (2010) The challenges of global environmental change for urban Africa. Urban Forum 21(3):235–248CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Simon D, Leck H (2013) Cities, human security and global environmental change. In: Sygna L, O’Brien K, Wolf J (eds) A changing environment for human security: transformative approaches to research, policy and action. Earthscan, London/New York, pp 170–180Google Scholar
  48. Simon D, Leck H (2014) Urban dynamics and the challenges of global environmental change in the south. In: Parnell S, Oldfield S (eds) A Routledge handbook of cities of the global south. Routledge, LondonGoogle Scholar
  49. Swilling M, Annecke E (2012) Just transitions: explorations of sustainability in an unfair world. UCT Press, Cape TownGoogle Scholar
  50. Turok I (2013) Linking urbanization and development in Africa’s economic revival. In: Parnell S, Pieterse E (eds) Africa’s urban revolution. Zed Books Ltd, London, pp 60–81Google Scholar
  51. Turok I, McGranahan G (2013) Urbanisation and economic growth: the arguments and evidence for Africa and Asia. Environ Urban 25(2):465–482CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Tyler S, Moench M (2012) A framework for urban climate resilience. Clim Dev 4(4):311–326CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. UN-Habitat (2003) The challenge of slums: global report on human settlements. Earthscan, LondonGoogle Scholar
  54. UN-Habitat (2009) Global report on human settlements 2009: planning sustainable cities. Earthscan, LondonGoogle Scholar
  55. UN-Habitat (2014) The state of African cities, 2014: reimagining sustainable urban transitions. UN Habitat, NairobiGoogle Scholar
  56. United Nations (2012) World urbanization prospects: the 2011 revision, CD-ROM edition. United Nations, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population DivisionGoogle Scholar
  57. Watson V (2009) The planned city sweeps the poor away…: urban planning and 21st century urbanisation. Prog Plan 72(3):151–193CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Watson V (2013) African urban fantasies: dreams or nightmares? Environ Urban 0956247813513705Google Scholar
  59. Watson V, Agbola B (2013) Who will plan Africa’s cities? Counterpoints, Africa Research Institute, LondonGoogle Scholar
  60. Winkler T (2009) For the equitable city yet to come 1. Plan Theory Pract 10:65–83CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Winkler T (2011) On the liberal moral project of planning in South Africa. Urban Forum 22:135–148CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. Winkler T, Duminy J (2014) Planning to change the world? Questioning the normative ethics of planning theories, Planning Theory published online 19 Sept 2014. http://plt.sagepub.com/content/early/2014/09/15/1473095214551113. doi: 10.1177/1473095214551113. Accessed 30 Sept 2014
  63. Wratten E (1995) Conceptualizing urban poverty. Environ Urban 7(1):11–38CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Ziervogel G, Parnell S (2012) South African coastal cities: governance responses to climate change adaptation. In: Cartwright A, Parnell S, Oelofse G, Ward S (eds) Climate change at the city scale: impacts, mitigation and adaptation in Cape Town. Routledge, Abingdon, pp 223–243Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Environmental and Geographical Sciences and African Centre for CitiesUniversity of Cape TownCape TownSouth Africa

Personalised recommendations