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Environment Quality Of Life American Cities

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Question:

Discuss About The Environment Quality Of Life American Cities?

 

Answer:

Introduction

The report gives an overview of the comparison and contrast of how water sustainability and energy sustainability has been addressed in Australia compared to Japan. The comparison and contrast is however done following various steps. In the first step there is a description of the government regulation in Australia regarding water and energy sustainability. This step also describes about the key scientific research and technological innovation of the country. There is also discussion about the actions and taken by the nongovernmental organizations and private sector in ensuring water and energy sustainability. The first step also describes exemplar projects undertaken in Australia related to energy and water sustainability. The second step of the report gives a similar overview of government regulation, scientific research and technological innovation and actions of private sector and nongovernmental organization s related to energy and water sustainability in United Arab Emirates (UAE). There is also a third step in the report that compares and contrasts the actions undertaken by each country on energy and water sustainability where focus is mainly on the reasons for difference in dealing with the issue, the approach that is more successful and ways where one country can learn from the other.

 

Government Regulation on Energy Sustainability

Sustainability of energy is necessary for the survival and development of human beings. Industrialization is also dependent on energy. There has also been an increasing trend in the global energy consumption due to population growth that leads to an increase in per capita energy consumption (Hussey and Pittock 2012). Sustainability of energy is required as there is no security of price stability of petroleum. There need for sustenance is also due to energy depletion and climatic influence. Energy however exists in renewable and non renewable form. The non renewable forms include solar energy, biomass energy, ocean energy, wind energy, hydropower energy, and geothermal energy. Sustainability of energy is required as there is a limitation in energy derived from each of the source.

Thus the government imposed certain regulation on energy sustainability which is as follows:

The government imposed a Renewable Energy Target (RET) scheme where reforms were undertaken based on renewable energy target that followed not only extensive consultations but also careful considerations. The scheme also mentioned a new target for energy generation on a large scale by the year 2020 will almost double renewable energy production on a large scale in comparison to present levels. There is also a mention in the scheme that by 2020 the Australia electricity generation will mostly be from the renewable sources.

Establishment of Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) in the year 2012 in order to increase the affordability of renewable energy solutions so that there is an increased supply of renewable energy in Australia. Until 2022, ARENA’s investment amounts to $ 2.5 billion in projects that will not only fasten the commercialization of renewable sources but at the same time will lead to a diversification in Australia’s energy sources. ARENA lends their full support to any activities related to renewable energy through its process of funding so that new technologies can be developed and there is an increase in investor confidence.

There has been initiative taken to increase the solar power production by building more plants.

The government also initiated regulation on wind energy with an outcome where in 2015 wind firms were responsible for producing 33.7 percent clean supply of energy and at the same time accounted for 4.9 percent electricity in Australia’s overall electricity. Thus, the government made five wind firms operational by the year 2015. This increased the capacity of the wind industry of Australia to 4187W. There were also under construction wind firm’s that further add 365 MW once completed.

The Council of Australian Government(COAG) in the year 2008 agreed for the development of a national strategy on energy efficiency for accelerating efforts for energy efficient, streamlining responsibilities and roles across all government levels and also help businesses and household to transit to low future carbon emission.

The government of Australia also mandated that appliances should have mandatory Energy Rating Level (ERL). The appliances that must include ERL are air conditioner, cloth dryers, clothes washers, computer monitors, television, freezers, refrigerators and dishwashers.

Energy efficiency remains a challenge in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) because of high consumption rates, economic growth and growth in population (Asif 2016). However, to address these problems the government has initiated certain regulatory measures for energy sustainability that are follows:

  1. The domestic electricity consumption of UAE is expected to have a rapid growth therefore the Government have ensured development and implementation of an energy efficiency strategies along with building a regulatory framework that will address the market challenges and demand. The government has also taken initiatives for marketing campaigns that will improve the consumption habits for energy and also promote research and development initiatives.
  2. The government also initiates comprehensive approach like use of smarter urban electrical grids for energy substance in the long run, These grids not only enables one to monitor usage over time but at the same time leads to effective ways for energy consumptions.
  3. The government also ensures sustainable and green construction where the key design constraint is involves enhanced energy efficiency.
 

Key Scientific Research and Technological Innovation on Energy Sustainability

The research and innovation for energy sustainability in Australia involves (Faunce et. al 2013):

  1. Development of Electricity Grids: Enhancing energy efficiency by development of intelligent models that can not only change the way of energy transmission at home but also in industry and buildings.
  2. Development of Energy Storage: The technologies adopted for energy storage is a cutting age one and make use of ceramic, heat and batteries.
  3. Development of sustainable and efficient fossil fuel technologies. This allows safe access and hence extraction of rich resources of Australia that includes coal, gas and oil.
  4. Use of Hydraulic Fracturing: This is a method used mainly used by oil and gas industry for increasing the total quantity of extracted gas and oil from reservoirs.
  5. Making use of Solar Energy: This ensures making a stable source of power for the future through next generation solar power cells and solar thermal systems.

The research and innovation for energy sustainability in UAE involves (Vidican et. al 2012):

  1. Construction of Green Buildings: The construction of such buildings encourages efficiency in energy consumption.
  2. Encouraging Environmental Tourism: This involves tourism activities that are eco friendly and leads to promotion and preservation of cultural heritage and also preserves innate natural environment
  3. By Ensuring Clean Energy: This involves undertaking initiatives that leads to promotion of sustainable energy.
  4. Ensuring Issue of Energy Awards: The Emirates Energy Award launched by the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy helps in fostering conservation of energy and increasing awareness.
  5. Launching of Zero Energy Parks: Thus in order to reduce the consumption of energy by 30 % by 2020, UAE has taken initiative of operation of eco-friendly parks that operates independently by making use of solar panels.

Actions of Non-Government Organisations and Private Sector on Energy Sustainability

The actions taken by various non-governmental organizations on sustainability of energy are as follows:

  1. 100% Renewable Energy/Solar Citizens is a new project that is launched for protection of the rights of Australians with solar power so as to reduce bill and creation of a clean power.
  2. Beyond Zero Emission Inc is a non profit education and research organization for the implementing and designing an economy in Australia based on zero emission.
  3. Citizen Own Renewable Energy Network Australia (CORENA) ( Portney 2013): They are involved in the creation of movement powered by people for fast tracking Australia’s renewable energy revolution of Australia.
  4. Moreland Energy Foundation: This is a non profit organization that undertakes research, consultation and community engagement for advocating energy efficiency techniques, renewable energy and related policies and planning issues.
 

The actions taken by the private sector on sustainability of energy are as follows:

  1. The private sector realizes the need for energy productivity through use of renewable energy that leads to creating cost effective pathways. The private sector is also stressing on the reduction of emissions of carbon.
  2. The private sector is also incorporating means for affordable and clean energy so that more people have access to energy means that are effective.

The actions taken by various non-governmental organizations on sustainability of energy are as follows:

  1. The nongovernmental organizations play a very important role in sustenance of energy at an international level (Al-Amir and Abu-Hijleh 2013). These organizations undertake campaigns that act as key drivers in regulating energy consumption and replacing it with renewable energy.
  2. Through aided advances in communication and information technology, these non profit organizations also help to focus attention on the various environmental and social externalities and also identify various renewable sources of energy that are cost effective and beneficial.

The actions taken by the private sector on sustainability of energy are as follows:

  1. The private sector plays a vital role in realizing that sustainability of energy helps in achieving goals of sustainable development. This step not only helps in improving the business environment but at the same time helps in market building.
  2. The private sector also adopts means for corporate sustainability and innovation through substance of energy. This is adopted by defining priorities, setting goals, integration of sustainability into core governance and core business and communication and reporting.

The exemplar projects on energy sustainability are as follows:

The architects of the Australian Institute decided on rebuilding one of Australia’s blue-chip pieces of real estate (Pierce and Paulos 2012). This was done for conceiving and constructing a building which embody sustainable architecture in a multi-storey modern commercial office building. This was known as the 41 Exemplar or 41X. The and far reaching initiatives of the project is the attainment of a sustainability charter for all building tenants. This case study however, describes how project team put forwards Institute’s vision for rebuilding 41X. There is also a measure of quantity of carbon generated through building’s embodied material emissions, transport, waste and operational energy. The case study also enables us to look at how total carbon metric (TCM) tool helps in influencing the design of the building and at the same time also helps in exploring the role the TCM on the building’s Sustainability Charter.

The exemplar projects on energy sustainability are as follows:

Xeritown represents a 59 hectare mixed use development project which is to be built in Dubai, UAE. The projects fall under the eco tourism category and include sports venues, science attractions, retail hotels, resorts and theme parks (Sbia, Shahbaz and Hamdi 2014). However, in spite of the extravagant commercial context, Xeritown master plan includes has integrated approach towards sustainable development. In addition to this Xeritown’s master plan also ensures equal emphasis on conservation of energy through passive design.

Government Regulation on Water Sustainability

There is a scarcity of water in Australia due to insufficient supply in most urban areas and degraded river systems. There is also greater loss of water through transmission and evaporation (Hussey and Pittock 2012). Scarcity is also due to future climatic changes and variability in rainfall.  To prevent this government has undertaken certain regulation for conservation of water which is follows:

  1. The government initiated residential water efficiency programs that involved subsidies for washing machines, toilets and showerheads that were energy efficient. Rebates were also provided for rainwater tanks along with necessary advice provided on watering of garden.
  2. The government also undertook business, council and school water efficient programs where businesses, schools and councils were provided advice to undertake and identify ways that helped them use water in an efficient manner.
  3. The government also undertook leak management program that reduced the annual leakage of water from water supply of Sydney to about 24 gallons per year.
  4. There were also water recycling programs undertaken by the government of Australia that helped in recycling of water from time to time.

The first regulation for water sustainability in UAE's for keeping a tab on water misuse is still under review and will get passed in a matter of 12 months. There was even no revelation about the draft of the regulation (Wada and Bierkens 2014). The researchers are however, insistent upon the fact that increased monitoring is required in the environmental impacts of the UAE’s main water source.

The companies that organized their own distribution and production of water will also fall under the regulation that will be passed. This has to be noted that misuse of water is a major issue in UAE due to scarcity. Thus, there is no surplus water existent but however the country has achieved ways in securing it providing the required supply.

Key Scientific Research and Technological Innovation on Water Sustainability

The scientific Research and Technological Innovation are as follows(Sivapalan et .al 2014):

  1. Through agricultural water savings: This can be done through an appropriate selection of species of crops, adopting efficient irrigation technologies, proper scheduling of irrigation, harvesting of rain water and reusing water.
  2. Improving household efficiency: This can be done through use of water efficient showerheads, front loading washing machines, replacing 11 L single flush toiled with 6/3 L dual flush toilet.
  3. Connecting rain water tanks to toilets, washing machines and dishwashers
  4. Ensure commercial water savings by adopting options for water saving and at the same time identifying water leaks.

The scientific Research and Technological Innovation are as follows:

UAE has undertaken a programme known as the science of rain enhancement. The program was launched by Ministry of Presidential Affairs with an aim for dealing and fighting against water scarcity through the use of technology that stimulates rainfall. With a budget availability of $5 million (Dh18.36m), the programme has attracted the interest from researchers all over the world (Jamil, Ahmad and Jeon, 2016).

Actions of Non-government Organisations and Private Sector for Water Sustainability

The actions undertaken by nongovernmental organisations for Water Sustainability:

  1. The nongovernmental organizations undertakes ground water drilling activities for sustainability of water
  2. The local also ensures in building had dug well and hand pumps for maintain water sustenance.
  3. They also undertake protection of spring resources and harvesting of rain water.

The actions undertaken by private sector for water sustainability:

The private sector in order to meet the scarcity of water is undertaking actions in modernizing and expanding their sanitation and water infrastructure and thereby helping in improving the efficiency of water systems. Thus an effective regulatory framework is essential to make the most of private sector.

The actions undertaken by nongovernmental organisations for Water Sustainability:

The nongovernmental organization in UAE aims at providing awareness about water conservation, offers various programs that deals with water conservation, utility reforms and introduces non conventional resources of water.

The actions undertaken by private sector for water sustainability

  1. The private sector undertakes steps in promotion of water conservation and water is a scarcity
  1. The private sector also introduces new tariff based on a water meter.
  1. Provides mass awareness on measures of water conservation.
  1. Puts forward new methods for irrigation like subsurface drip irrigation
  1. Undertakes actions for sufficient safe supply of drinking water.
 

Exemplar Projects on Water Sustainability

The exemplar project on Water Sustainability is as follows:

WGV by Land Corp is 2.1 hector infill developments in Fremantle suburb of White Gum Valley. This is an ‘Innovation through Demonstration’ project that showcases design excellence on various levels through incorporation of a range of diverse building types, sensitive climate considerations and ensuring water management strategies.

The exemplar project on Water Sustainability is as follows:

The Royal Commission of Water, Jordan is a project implemented by Ministry of Water and Irrigation (MWI) with the aim of reducing Jordan’s increasing levels of unsustainable extraction of groundwater, development of an effective water resource management system for wise water usage, cooperating with agencies on sustainable water management projects and plans.

Comparison

Energy and Water are important for sustainable development. Therefore, conservation or sustainability of energy and water is an important factor. That is why each of the countries has undertaken necessary actions for energy and water sustainability in the best possible manner. However, in Australia due to scarcity of water government has undertaken regulation for water conservation while in UAE the laws for water sustainailibity are still under way. UAE is also a water scarce country so it can take reference from the regulations in Australia and make necessary changes or additions if required.

Conclusion

The report ends in the light by comparing and contrasting water sustainability and energy sustainability in Australia and UAE. The report gives an overview of government regulation, scientific research and technological innovation and actions of private sector and nongovernmental organization related to energy and water sustainability in United Arab Emirates (UAE). Keeping the same factors constant a similar overview is drawn for Australia.

 

References:

Al-Amir, J. and Abu-Hijleh, B., 2013. Strategies and policies from promoting the use of renewable energy resource in the UAE. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 26, pp.660-667.

Asif, M., 2016. Growth and sustainability trends in the buildings sector in the GCC region with particular reference to the KSA and UAE. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 55, pp.1267-1273.

Faunce, T., Styring, S., Wasielewski, M.R., Brudvig, G.W., Rutherford, A.W., Messinger, J., Lee, A.F., Hill, C.L., Fontecave, M., MacFarlane, D.R. and Hankamer, B., 2013. Artificial photosynthesis as a frontier technology for energy sustainability. Energy & Environmental Science, 6(4), pp.1074-1076.

Hussey, K. and Pittock, J., 2012. The energy–water nexus: Managing the links between energy and water for a sustainable future. Ecology and Society, 17(1).

Hussey, K. and Pittock, J., 2012. The energy–water nexus: Managing the links between energy and water for a sustainable future. Ecology and Society, 17(1).

Jamil, M., Ahmad, F. and Jeon, Y.J., 2016. Renewable energy technologies adopted by the UAE: Prospects and challenges–A comprehensive overview. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 55, pp.1181-1194.

Pierce, J. and Paulos, E., 2012, May. Beyond energy monitors: interaction, energy, and emerging energy systems. In Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (pp. 665-674). ACM.

Portney, K.E., 2013. Taking sustainable cities seriously: Economic development, the environment, and quality of life in American cities. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Sbia, R., Shahbaz, M. and Hamdi, H., 2014. A contribution of foreign direct investment, clean energy, trade openness, carbon emissions and economic growth to energy demand in UAE. Economic Modelling, 36, pp.191-197.

Sivapalan, M., Konar, M., Srinivasan, V., Chhatre, A., Wutich, A., Scott, C.A., Wescoat, J.L. and Rodríguez?Iturbe, I., 2014. Socio?hydrology: Use?inspired water sustainability science for the Anthropocene. Earth's Future, 2(4), pp.225-230.

Vidican, G., McElvaney, L., Samulewicz, D. and Al-Saleh, Y., 2012. An empirical examination of the development of a solar innovation system in the United Arab Emirates. Energy for Sustainable Development, 16(2), pp.179-188.

Wada, Y. and Bierkens, M.F., 2014. Sustainability of global water use: past reconstruction and future projections. Environmental Research Letters, 9(10), p.104003.

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