Towards a world of cities in 2050

04-09-2014 | Publication

Expanding cities in developing countries pose great challenges on drinking water, sanitation, waste water and protection against floods. On request of UN Habitat, PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency has published ‘Towards a world of cities in 2050’. Progress may be expected in the access to safe drinking water, quality of surface water is expected to deteriorate.

Access to water expected to improve, sanitation to lag behind. Continued investments in waste-water treatment in developed countries are expected to improve surface water quality. The quality of surface water in other countries, however, is expected to deteriorate between 2010 and 2050.

By 2050, 15% of global population lives in flood-prone areas

As urban areas expand, hundreds of trillions of dollars in assets will be increasingly at risk from flooding. A wide range of flood risk strategies can strongly reduce the flood risks.

‘Smart water’ - integration of water challenges in urban development required

An integrated approach encompasses both technical as well spatial development approaches and acknowledges social equality. Various developing city networks may provide important platforms to exchange knowledge, understand challenges and share best practices and innovations that can support cities in their development strategies.