Ecology in Urban Planning: Mitigating the Environmental Damage of Municipal Solid Waste
The principles of well-known indices of sustainability—the Ecological Footprint (EF) and the Environmental Sustainability Index (ESI)—have been compared to discuss the essence of attitude, substantial differences and transferability into urban planning. An overview indicates that ideologically the EF is a more appropriate tool for ecological tasks due to its clear background of natural limits and the ability of “leakage” tracing. Furthermore the European Common Initiative is discussed as it proposes feasible indices monitoring actions towards local sustainability that could be considered in urban planning. Taking two Lithuanian cities as an example, integration of part of one index (regarding municipal solid wastes) into the ecological section of urban planning is presented. It has been estimated that in 10 years an average Lithuanian should generate an amount of municipal solid waste whose ecological impact will be equal to 19,900 kg of CO2-eq in 20 years time. Lastly considering urban planning scope and the EF practice, two opportunities are discussed: (1) tree planting and (2) waste incineration.
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