For the 13th year, World Resources Institute will host Stories to Watch, an event looking at the big stories that will shape the world in the coming year. Dr. Andrew Steer, president & CEO, World Resources Institute, will offer his views on the major economic, social, environment and development issues for 2016.
Transport is both a challenge and a solution to climate change and international development. The Transforming Transportation conference, which takes place January 14th and 15th, will explore how local officials, urban planners and other stakeholders can turn international transport commitments into concrete actions on the ground.
Cities designed for cars rather than people create an urban existence that is bad for the economy, bad for family life and terrible for the environment. We can -- we must -- do better in the 21st century, as WRI President and CEO Andrew Steer explains.
Raahgiri Day, a car-free event initiated by WRI and partners, has expanded to more than 36 locations in 30 cities in India. Together, some 10 million people have taken part. By promoting safer roads, more physical activity, less air pollution and stronger communities, Raahgiri Day is changing lifestyles and shifting perceptions of urban life.
One-tenth of all road traffic fatalities occur in India, the most of any country in the world. The majority of victims are pedestrians and cyclists, who have not traditionally been a priority for urban planners. With India’s cities expected to grow by over 200 million residents by 2030, action is needed to make streets safer for non-motorists.
With four local partners, WRI helped launch the first Raahgiri Day in November 2013 in Gurgaon, near New Delhi. Since then, the city closes major streets to motorized vehicles for several hours on Sundays, opening them for recreational activities including cycling, dancing, walking and yoga. WRI played a key role in developing and organizing the Raahgiri Day concept and joined with media to promote it. After this initial success, WRI worked with the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy, Times of India and Hindustan Times to replicate the event in other Indian cities.
The original Raahgiri Day in Gurgaon has continued to expand and has attracted over a million participants since its inception. WRI and its partners have helped take Raahgiri Day to an additional 11 cities, including Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Bhopal and Ahmedabad. Eighteen more cities have launched events inspired by Raahgiri Day, often customized with local names. Altogether, some 10 million people have taken part in the car-free events.
By promoting safer roads and increased physical activity, these events have helped to shift the perception of urban mobility, introducing the idea of streets as public spaces. Raahgiri Day is sparking a movement for change, and decision-makers are taking notice. Gurgaon, for example, has built 8 kilometers (5 miles) of cycle track and is planning a larger network. Delhi has started the process of redesigning 1,260 kilometers (783 miles) of main city roads with pedestrians and cyclists in mind. Bhopal is initiating India’s first bike-sharing program. With increasing interest from citizens and governments, Raahgiri Day is poised to help bring sustainable mobility to cities across India, demonstrating that streets are not just for cars, but for pedestrians and cyclists, too.
The technical note describes the methodologies used in the model for estimating collective greenhouse gas impacts of Compact of Mayors cities.
At COP21's first-ever Buildings Day, WRI and other groups announced the expansion of the Building Efficiency Accelerator to catalyze an increase in energy-efficient buildings in developing country cities.
PARIS (December 3, 2015) – At the Paris climate conference (COP21), building efficiency took center stage with the launch of the Global Alliance for Buildings and Construction.
Supported by a new $2 million grant from the Global Environment Facility (GEF), World Resources Institute (WRI) will leverage and expand its work with city and subnational governments to advance building efficiency policies and actions. The GEF funding to WRI and its partners will help scale up the Building Efficiency Accelerator, which was launched in 2014. These efforts will be coordinated by WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities, which aims to create more livable and sustainable cities around the world.
PARIS (December 2, 2015)– The 100 Resilient Cities (100RC, pioneered by the Rockefeller Foundation) initiative today announced new signatories to the 10% Resilience Pledge, with a total of 19 mayors and city leaders committing to dedicate 10 percent of their city's annual budget toward resilience-building activities throughout their term in office.
BRASILIA, BRAZIL (November 19, 2015)– The World Health Organization (WHO) released the Declaration from the Second Global High-level Conference on Road Safety: Time for Results. The Declaration recommends a set of actions to improve road safety through stronger management, legislation and enforcement. WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities is a member of the United Nations Global Road Safety Collaboration and has provided expertise on the connection of sustainable mobility and road safety.
Success Stories for Brazilian Cities
This paper explores strategies and approaches that effectively minimize risks for private investors in Brazil’s transport sector.