Type: Research
Pages: 2 | Words: 471
Reading Time: 2 Minutes

Sustainability refers to the process of integrating human activities with natural systems, thus, resulting into continued survival of plants and animals living on the earth’s surface. Sustainability entails creation of a unique environment that supports the activities of human beings as well as the wellbeing of nature. With respect to cities and urban centers, sustainability may refer to the ability of cities to support human activities and uphold swelling human populations within them. It involves proper planning, design and management of cities. Fitzgerald (2011) asserts that a sustainable city must have the capacity to minimize the negative impacts of human activities on the environment.

Most modern cities are highly populated with numerous human activities taking place within them. This big population in most cities has resulted from massive migration of large numbers of people from rural areas to urban centers. According to Polese and Stren, most people, especially youths, move to towns and cities in search of employment opportunities (2010). Such rural-to-urban migrations have resulted into various problems and challenges within the cities, for example, increased rates of crimes, poor housing facilities, reduced access to basic amenities such as schools and healthcare facilities and poor transport services (Frey & Yaneske 2010; Newman & Jennings 2009). The emergence of such social challenges has raised heated debates on sustainability of large populations within cities. Policy makers, economists, government officers and demographic professionals have constantly argued on possibilities of having sustainable cities.

I would argue that high population within cities has resulted into reduced rates of growth and development. This is because most resources, found within the cities, are overstretched to meet increased demands and needs of the ever-bulging population, while economic resources in rural areas remain idle, as most productive members of the society migrate to urban centers. This has resulted into decline in productivity of the economy.

The uncontrolled growth of cities has also resulted into degradation of the environment as well as social deprivation due to high ecological footprint, with problems such as increased pollution and low rates of employments being on the rise.

In my view, the rate of growth and development in a city also depends on trading activities, which involve inflow and outflow of goods and services and effective management of economic resources such as human capital and minerals.

Management of wastes within a city is also crucial for its sustainability and development. However, due to increased production of wastes by large populations in cities, management and disposal of wastes have posed great challenges. Improper waste disposals within cities have resulted into environmental degradation and massive ecological destruction.

I would argue that effective sustainability of cities can only be achieved through regulation of rural-to-urban migrations, reduced pollution and efficient utilization of economic resources and improvement of infrastructures such as road and communication network. This would aid in improving the living standards of the people.

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