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Big U.S. Cities Growing Faster than Suburbs

Big U.S. Cities Growing Faster than Suburbs | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it
For the first time in a century, most of America's largest cities are growing at a faster rate than their surrounding suburbs.

 

"As young adults seeking a foothold in the weak job market shun home-buying and stay put in bustling urban centers," this profoundly is changing the demographic processes that create our major urban areas.  "Driving the resurgence are young adults, who are delaying careers, marriage and having children amid persistently high unemployment. Burdened with college debt or toiling in temporary, lower-wage positions, they are spurning homeownership in the suburbs for shorter-term, no-strings-attached apartment living, public transit and proximity to potential jobs in larger cities."  With home ownership no longer the goal and the suburbs the destination of choice, how with this affect the urban structure of or major metropolitan areas? 


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Kim Vignale's comment, July 30, 2012 10:33 PM
It is logical for many single people to live in urban areas due to job availability, convenience of location, and small affordable apartments. Established families resides in suburban areas because houses are bigger and land is vast for young children to grow up in. However, a typical college graduate would find it difficult to find employment right after college; once employed, wages are not high enough for these young adults to buy a house. I would find it more convenient to live in the city because public transportation is available and more jobs are offered in large cities. Once i get established with a career, it would be more logical to buy a house in the suburbs.
Seth Dixon's comment, August 2, 2012 2:39 PM
It is a logical shift in urban processes, especially when you consider that in the United States, fewer and fewer people are 1) getting married young and 2) having children. Both of these makes the suburbs less of an ideal spot young Americans that are leaving college and their parents homes.
Dawn Haas Tache's curator insight, April 8, 12:41 PM

APHG: HW Option 8

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Beyond Rio’s Disappointment, Finding a Path to the Future by Fred Pearce: Yale Environment 360

Beyond Rio’s Disappointment, Finding a Path to the Future by Fred Pearce: Yale Environment 360 | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it

The Rio+20 Summit produced a largely meaningless document that failed to address the daunting environmental challenges the world faces.

But many at the conference looked to an alternative approach they called “green economics” — using market forces to help nations achieve sustainable development. Fred Pearce gives his opinion...

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Yale Environment 360: BP Oil Spill Accelerated Erosion of Louisiana Marshlands

The 2010 BP oil spill hastened the loss of Louisiana’s already fragile salt marshlands, a new study says. In a comparison of erosion rates at three healthy marsh sites and three areas affected by the oil spill.

University of Florida scientists found that oil from the spill coated thick grasses on the outer edge of some wetlands, killing off salt marsh plants 15 to 30 feet from the shoreline. When those grasses died, the deep roots that held the soil sediment died as well, causing the rate of erosion on shore banks to more than double.

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The data | Happy Planet Index

The Happy Planet Index (HPI) is the leading global measure of sustainable well-being. The HPI measures what matters: the extent to which countries deliver long, happy, sustainable lives for the people that live in them.

The overall index scores rank countries based on their efficiency, how many long and happy lives each produces per unit of environmental output.

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Gro Harlem Brundtland censures Rio+20's gender equality outcomes

Gro Harlem Brundtland censures Rio+20's gender equality outcomes | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it
Absence of reproductive rights reference in UN Women's call to action 'a step backwards', says former Norway prime minister...
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Greasy Palms: The Impact of Indonesia’s Palm Oil Plantations [short film - Paradigm Shift Project]

Greasy Palms: The Impact of Indonesia’s Palm Oil Plantations  [short film - Paradigm Shift Project] | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it

Indonesia is a country of incredible beauty. As one of the more bio-diverse regions on our planets, its role in the environmental future of our globe is paramount. With the increasing demand for cheap biofuels to lessen the global north’s dependency on foreign petroleum, palm oil plantations have taken precedence over much of Indonesia’s last remaining rainforest– the only refuge for critically endangered species, such as the orangutan, who shares 96.4% of our genes.

This project concerns the social, environmental, and economic impacts of palm oil production in Indonesia, including the loss of over 2.8 million hectares of primary rainforest each year.

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H2OPE: Water to People Everywhere [short film] - The Paradigm Shift Project

H2OPE: Water to People Everywhere [short film]  - The Paradigm Shift Project | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it

H2OPE: Water to People Everywhere

In July 2010, the United Nations General Assembly passed a resolution affirming that everyone has the right to clean drinking water and proper sanitation. Yet, as the World Health Organization reports, unsafe water causes 4 billion cases of diarrhea each year, and results in 2.2 million deaths, a stark statistic primarily comprised of children under the age of five. This means that 15% of child deaths each year are attributable to diarrhea– a a child dying every 15 seconds. In India, the single largest cause of ill health and death of children is diarrhea, killing nearly half a million children each year (WHO & UNICEF 2000, 2010). Not only is a lack of access to clean water a clear infringement on a fundamental human right, it is also a threat to global peace; a recent UNESCO study made critical links between access to water and conflicts at the community, regional and international levels (2006).

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NASA Video - Introduction to ocean currents

NASA Video - Introduction to ocean currents | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it

"A newly released video from NASA showcases the space agency’s data visualization skills, as well as the dramatic science behind the Sun’s powerful coronal mass ejections and their interactions with the Earth’s magnetosphere and climate. (...) What’s really amazing about this video is that the underlying data visualizations are based on real satellite observations. The swirling ocean currents were created from real ocean current data."

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Our Dwindling Food Variety (National Geographic Magazine)

Our Dwindling Food Variety  (National Geographic Magazine) | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it

Info-graphic highlighting loss of seed varieties for various food crops.

As we've come to depend on a handful of commercial varieties of fruits and vegetables, thousands of heirloom varieties have disappeared. It's hard to know exactly how many have been lost over the past century, but a study conducted in 1983 by the Rural Advancement Foundation International gave a clue to the scope of the problem. It compared USDA listings of seed varieties sold by commercial U.S. seed houses in 1903 with those in the U.S. National Seed Storage Laboratory in 1983. The survey, which included 66 crops, found that about 93 percent of the varieties had gone extinct. More up-to-date studies are needed.

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The clean-up begins on China's dirty secret – soil pollution

The clean-up begins on China's dirty secret – soil pollution | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it
The Bonn Challenge is a global land restoration initiative that aims to tackle the issue that is increasingly concerning scientists...
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Obesity impacts weight of nations

Obesity impacts weight of nations | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it
Researchers say that increasing levels of fatness around the world could have the same impact on global resources as an extra billion people.

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Scientists Move Closer to Predicting Volcanic Eruptions « Science World

Scientists Move Closer to Predicting Volcanic Eruptions « Science World | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it
Oregon scientists who correctly predicted the 2011 eruption of the Axial Seamount underwater volcano years before it occurred, now say another underwater volcano off the Oregon coast gave off signals just hours before it erupted.
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Belo Monte Dam: Conflict in the Amazon by : Yale Environment 360

Belo Monte Dam: Conflict in the Amazon by : Yale Environment 360 | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it
The Belo Monte dam, now under construction in the Amazon, is heralded as an abundant power source for Brazil’s burgeoning economy. But critics contend the project’s benefits are outweighed by the environmental and social costs.

Conservationists and local indigenous people contend the Belo Monte project will exact a significant environmental and human toll, flooding 260 square miles of rainforest and displacing more than 20,000 people who depend on free-flowing rivers for their livelihoods. Environmentalists also warn that the $16 billion Belo Monte project is the vanguard of more than 100 dams and hydroelectric projects planned throughout the Amazon basin in Brazil, Ecuador, Peru, Colombia, and Bolivia. Should these proposed dams be built, critics say, rapid development and resource extraction will soon follow, leading to a major loss of the Amazon’s forests and the transformation of its great rivers into a series of reservoirs.

Multimedia journalist Charles Lyons traveled to the site of the future dam complex, scheduled to begin producing electricity within several years, and produced this video report that lays out both sides of this controversial project.

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Solar-powered 'supertrees' breathe life into Singapore's urban oasis - CNN.com

Solar-powered 'supertrees' breathe life into Singapore's urban oasis - CNN.com | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it
Singapore's latest development opens this month, with imposing 50-meter-tall artificial trees towering over botanical gardens.

The man-made mechanical forest consists of 18 supertrees that act as vertical gardens, generating solar power, acting as air venting ducts for nearby conservatories, and collecting rainwater. To generate electricity, 11 of the supertrees are fitted with solar photovoltaic systems that convert sunlight into energy, which provides lighting and aids water technology within the conservatories below.

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Yale Environment 360: Foreign ‘Land Grabs’ Scooping up Key Agricultural Lands

From 2000 to 2010, foreign investors bought or leased roughly 270,000 square miles of prime agricultural land, most of it in the developing world, according to a report by the Worldwatch Institute.

Half of the land was in Africa, acquired by investors from China, the Middle East, and other countries and regions, Worldwatch said. Although the pace of what Worldwatch called “land grabs” has slowed somewhat in the last several years...

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Belo Monte Dam: Conflict in the Amazon by : Yale Environment 360

The Belo Monte dam, now under construction in the Amazon, is heralded as an abundant power source for Brazil’s burgeoning economy. But critics contend the project’s benefits are outweighed by the environmental and social costs.

On the Xingu River in the Amazon basin, a consortium of companies is building the Belo Monte dam complex, which will be the world’s third-largest hydroelectric project, generating abundant electricity for Brazil’s rapidly growing economy.

Conservationists and local indigenous people contend the Belo Monte project will exact a significant environmental and human toll, flooding 260 square miles of rainforest and displacing more than 20,000 people who depend on free-flowing rivers for their livelihoods.

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UNEP Launches Global Initiative for Resource Efficient Cities - UNEP

UNEP Launches Global Initiative for Resource Efficient Cities - UNEP | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it
The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and partners have unveiled a new initiative that aims to reduce pollution levels, improve resource efficiency and reduce infrastructure costs in cities across the world.Launched today at the Rio+20 summit in Brazil, the Global Initiative for Resource-Efficient Cities will work with local and national governments, the private sector and civil society groups to promote energy efficient buildings, efficient water use, sustainable waste management and other activities.

In a rapidly urbanizing world, cities are increasingly becoming the focus of international sustainability efforts.

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America and the West’s dirty little secret: Are reductions in greenhouse gases best measured by production or consumption?

America and the West’s dirty little secret: Are reductions in greenhouse gases best measured by production or consumption? | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it
By importing goods from polluting factories in Asia, Americans and others in developed countries underwrite carbon emissions...

 

This is a compelling question: are reductions in greenhouse gases best measured by production or consumption?  The question that this article is posing is essentially trying to find blame for greenhouse gas emmision, but thinking geographically, ponders where along the commodity chain should the bulk of the blame be placed.  What do you think?  


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Malaysia’s Invisible Children: The Rights of Street, Stateless & Refugee Kids [short film - Paradigm Shift Project]

Malaysia’s Invisible Children:  The Rights of Street, Stateless & Refugee Kids [short film - Paradigm Shift Project] | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it

Malaysia’s Invisible Children:

The Rights of Street, Stateless & Refugee Kids

Malaysia is one of Southeast Asia's most developed nations, and yet it’s home to some of the most marginalized children in the world, stateless, refugee, and/or street kids whose rights are far from recognized or upheld. It has been estimated that there are as many as half a million children between the ages of 6 and 18 who roam Malaysia's streets every night, and according to UNHCR, roughly 18,600 refugee children. Without adequate legal protection, these youth are all too often completely neglected by government institutions and programs.

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peru-food security (excellent short film)

peru-food security (excellent short film) | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it

Rapid urbanization and population growth in the shanty towns on the outskirts of Lima, Peru, where the majority of residents live in poverty and lack access to basic necessities such as potable water and adequate sanitation, has led to serious negative consequences on both human and environmental health. These trends, which are not unique to Peru but can be seen in urban areas of low-income countries throughout the world, have particularly devastating effects on household food security and nutrition.

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"Buy me a river": the UN has created the "Inclusive Wealth Index",

"Buy me a river": the UN has created the "Inclusive Wealth Index", | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it

The UN has created the "Inclusive Wealth Index", a comprehensive look at a country's wealth that takes things like forests and rivers into account.

 

Comprised of human, natural and produced capital, the index covers 20 countries between 1990 and 2008. Between them they account for 58% of the world's population and 73% of its GDP.

 

As GDP does not consider natural-resource depletion or environmental degradation, the UN's index records lower annual average growth in wealth compared with GDP, of 1.7 percentage points.


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Unexpected Consequences: the melting of the Arctic Sea ice...

Unexpected Consequences: the melting of the Arctic Sea ice... | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it

Climate change has numerous casualities: the melting of the Arctic Sea ice is one such environment nightmare that's a result of global warming (don't worry Texans, you can just call it a "freak heat wave" or an "inexplicable anomaly").   But like all global processes, not all places are impacted equally.  Even in an economic recession, some find fortune while the majority flounder.  Same is true with the melting of the Artic; the melting might potentially open up the fabled Northwest Passage and create new, seasonal shipping lanes.  Who would benefit from this?  Who would suffer?  To see a short video on this, see: http://www.economist.com/blogs/dailychart/2011/09/melting-arctic-sea-ice-and-shipping-routes  


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Urban Trees Reveal Income Inequality

Urban Trees Reveal Income Inequality | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it
Wealthy cities seem to have it all. Expansive, well-manicured parks. Fine dining. Renowned orchestras and theaters. More trees. Wait, trees?

 

I certainly wouldn't argue that trees create economic inequality, but there appears to be a strong correlation in between high income neighborhoods and large mature trees in cities throughout the world (for a scholarly reference from the Journal, Landscape and Urban Planning, see: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0169204607002174 ). Why is there such a connection? In terms of landscape analysis, what does this say about those who have created these environments? Why do societies value trees in cities? How does the presence of trees change the sense of place of a particular neighborhood? For more Google images that show the correlation between income and trees (and to share your own), see: http://persquaremile.com/2012/05/24/income-inequality-seen-from-space/


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Donald Dane's comment, December 10, 2013 10:00 AM
this short article explains the evidence supporting tree to rich cities ratio. it goes to show that if I'm going to pay big bucks for location I would want the scenery to be beautiful hands down. they mention the per capita increase to tree ratio and how its only a dollar that influences such a high quantity of trees in city. bottom line is that it makes sense for the more trees in wealthier neighborhoods of the city because when your in the heart of the city you tend to see quantity of quality of homes and being jammed packed into small square footage doesn't leave much room for nature. but go just outside the city where the real estate is high and more spacious and you will find more trees the further and further from the center.
megan b clement's comment, December 16, 2013 1:04 AM
Like a previous article it explains how if viewing a neighborhood with lush grass and huge yards with landscaped grounds it is associated with big money. People pay top dollar for houses that have huge back yards and privacy of trees. You would not see yards like this is the city though so these neighborhoods on the outskirts of the citylines.
Shaun Scallan's curator insight, January 27, 2014 11:48 PM

Interesting the value, in the broadest sense, that trees can bring in an urban setting

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How geography shapes cultural diversity

How geography shapes cultural diversity | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it
Study offers evidence that long countries give better protection to languages than those that are wide.

 

This article explains some of the research that Jared Diamond's hypothesis in "Guns, Germs and Steel" generated.  More specifically, this particular research hypothesizes that in a given country, its primary axis of orientation (North-South, East-West or balanced) helps to predict the survival of indigenous languages.  While I have some skepticism about Diamond's core thesis, this is a good extension for teachers that use Guns, Germs and Steel in their classes. 


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Fighting Climate Change With Carbon Capture May Cause Quakes

Fighting Climate Change With Carbon Capture May Cause Quakes | IB Geography (Diploma Programme) | Scoop.it
Burying carbon dioxide in the
ground, considered a promising way to combat climate change, may
increase the risk of earthquakes, according to a report.

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