Six multinational companies including Toyota, TNT, Acciona, and Siemens have undertaken a project with a city in Finland to help it move toward smarter, more efficient urban planning. A sponsored article in the Guardian says it marks the first time a city has worked with global businesses on sustainability goals. The effort will focus on city center development, land use, and energy in Turku, Finland, the country's fifth-largest city.
The collaboration is part of the Urban Infrastructure Initiative, which itself is a project of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), a global association led by CEOs focused on business and sustainable development.
The director of the Urban Infrastructure Initiative, Christian Kornevall, emphasized the need to bringing sustainability to urban environments: "Very soon the majority of the world's population will live in cities. In order for urban environments to be both livable and sustainable, they need investment. This is why we are developing a suite of initiatives. Reviews are already underway for a number of cities across three continents."
The team has recommended steps in the following categories, all of which have been recognized by TreeHugger (or sister sites) as important steps to sustainability:
• Biogas production
• Material flow analysis (or in plainer English: "analyzing policies and performance to identify potential improvements, including necessary changes in people's behavior")