Building Green Cities in Developing Nations

A couple of weeks ago I ran into a blog owned by a man named Ronald Chagoury who is involved in the development of a supposedly green city that is being built in Nigeria of all places. I think it is really promising that there are actually such projects out there, and I wonder who is funding the project. It got me to thinking though, when I was reading the blog, that it might be possible to figure out some sort of incentive for funding the development of more green cities in developing countries.

After all, countries that are currently developing are going to usually be in need of new cities. Well, if not new cities, then their current cities will be subject to expansion. Of course, you can just as easily accommodate population growth by building new cities, as you can by expanding ones that already exist. However, I think that in principle, it is much easier to design a city that is going to use extensive green technologies, as opposed to retrofitting an existing city to use such technology. I also think that the former scenario would be much more effective at limiting the carbon footprint of a city.

The main way that I believe that it is much easier to accomplish this by building new cities is that it allows you to much more carefully plan how the infrastructure of the city is going to be built. I have a lot of ideas for infrastructure that would be very green, but perhaps it is not viable yet. For example, most roads are black due to a common preference in building material, and black as a color absorbs light across the entire visible spectrum. As such, it might be possible to incorporate advanced solar cells into roads to generate electricity. It’s just a thought, but I think it is an interesting one.

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