Urban sprawl and global warming – summary

Gonzalez, in his article “Urban Sprawl, Global Warming, and the Limits of Ecological Modernisation” (2005) points out the problem of urban sprawl is main reason for global warming and the high reliance on the development of technology as a solution is ineffective as described below.Gonzalez believes land management is direct and effective way to accomplish ecological modernisation, which is how businesses can develop economically keeping environment clean, rather than relying on technology.Gonzalez indicates that global warming is due to the urban sprawl. The author notes that expansion of cities results in higher energy use in transportation, housing, heating and cooling. According to the author, higher energy use means higher emissions of carbon dioxide. This leads to accumulation of global warming gases. As a result, global temperature is become higher. He also states that even though urban sprawl causes environmental problems, the supporters such as landowners, construction developers, automobile manufacturers and petrol producers pushed for urban sprawl for the reason of goods market expansion and raising the value of land holdings.The author describes that the solutions offered by the land developers and business groups to rely on the development of technology such as reducing global warming gases, alternative energy resources.However, Gonzalez argues that this solution is narrow and ineffective because it only shifts problems to other place not removing it. Instead, economically sensitive land management can be a direct and effective answer for ecological modernisation. These methods are compact cities, better land use, and improved transportations.


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