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This working paper describes sanitation access challenges in cities of the global south that have been overlooked in global indicators. In analyzing 15 cities, we found that almost two-thirds of urban residents lack access to safely managed sanitation, with access lowest in South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa. For these households, sanitation services are too expensive or unsafe. This paper highlights four key action areas for cities to improve sanitation access: extend the sewer and simplified sewer networks to household, communal and public toilets; support and regulate on-site sanitation in the absence of sewer systems; support citywide settlement upgrading; and make sanitation services affordable for all.

publication

This case study describes the history of Surabaya, Indonesia’s inclusive housing policy and how the Kampung Improvement Program became a model for in situ slum upgrading efforts both nationwide and internationally. The paper suggests certain actions that the city can take to maintain its legacy of inclusive housing policy, including prioritizing in situ, incremental upgrading of informal settlements; partnering with NGOs and universities to facilitate innovation; and improving the city’s transportation network and limiting high-end development that displaces residents.

blog post

Los Angeles Air Force Base, the first federal facility with a plug-in electric fleet of vehicles on the ground, has gone a step further. Now these EVs are the first in California to provide vehicle-to-grid services, with batteries that can send energy back to the grid, enabling cleaner, more efficient, more reliable power.

blog post

India is often ground zero for extreme heat events, and the urban heat island effect makes these events even more severe in cities, which are warmer than surrounding areas due to concentrated human activity and construction. Cities' buildings have a lot to do with the heat residents feel.

publication

The overarching goal of this publication is to provide a practical, easy-to-navigate reference document to help practitioners decide if or how to adopt electric and hybrid-electric bus fleets for public transport in their cities. Designed for an action-oriented policy audience looking to learn from experiences of other cities, this publication provides evidence-based answers to questions about recent developments in the electric and hybrid-electric bus space.

blog post

Investment in urban measures like efficient appliances, mass transit, walkable cities and more sustainable building materials could garner massive returns, some on relatively short payback periods. And the true scale of benefits goes beyond money: Low-carbon cities are essential to meeting the climate challenge.

news item

A new report from the Coalition for Urban Transitions shows that national governments that invest in low-carbon cities can enhance economic prosperity, make cities better places to live and rapidly reduce carbon emissions. The report finds that implementing low-carbon measures in cities would be worth almost US$24 trillion by 2050 and could reduce emissions from cities by 90%.

publication

Buildings that emit no greenhouse gas emissions during their operation are vital to meeting the SDGs and Paris Agreement targets. But in the past, zero carbon buildings have been assumed to be only attainable by technologically advanced or wealthy countries. New WRI research finds there are policy pathways to reach zero carbon buildings regardless of location or development status. The report identifies eight pathways countries can take to reach zero carbon buildings by reducing energy demand and cleaning energy supply.

publication

This resource is designed to aid cities and utilities in exploring the opportunity to develop a partnership agreement and consider key factors relevant to successfully enable long-lasting and productive engagements. It identifies insights and lessons learned from the experiences of several U.S. cities and investor owned electric utilities in developing innovative agreements in Colorado, Florida, Minnesota, North Carolina, Utah, and Wisconsin.

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