ENB:04:11 [Next] . [Previous] . [Contents]

HABITAT:

Jochen Eigen, Coordinator of the Sustainable Cities Programme, and Graham Alabaster, Human Settlements Officer, spoke on land degradation resulting from urbanization, industrialization, mining and tourism. The focus of this presentation was on the need to accommodate population growth through sustainable urbanization and reduce environmental degradation. He pointed out that urbanization accommodates population growth; environmental degradation can limit the benefits of urbanization; land degradation is one environmental concern associated with urbanization; and strengthening urban management capacity helps combat desertification. Attempts to manage population growth and migration have not been effective and HABITAT is now focussing on urban management. He also pointed out the cross-cutting nature of urban environmental issues; the need for any urban management strategies to involve those whose interests are affected, including women; and the need to involve and strengthen the public, private and community sectors. He explained how HABITAT's Sustainable Cities programme can be put to use to combat desertification.