Feb 17/18 | Democratizing the Green City: Sustainability and the Affordable Housing Crisis

 

democratizing-green-city

This two day conference examines a paradox: urban sustainability initiatives that are so vital in countering climate change can, through their improvements, contribute to driving up rents and driving out residents, and in the process, exacerbate sprawl, greenhouse gas emissions, and climate change itself. Our speakers examine this growing link between environmental improvement and social displacement and ask: How is it possible to break this link? What would it mean to include affordable housing and equity within sustainability efforts? And what are the consequences—socially and ecologically—if we don’t?

 

February 17, 2017 5:00pm-7pm | Digital Arts Research Center 108
February 18, 2017 9:30am-6pm | Red Room, Rachel Carson College

We begin with a focus on the housing crisis that is transforming our own state and region. Renowned for greening and sustainability initiatives—from transit-oriented development to locavore food sheds to green building—California is also home to the most unaffordable housing markets in the country, including Santa Cruz. Thus greening interacts with gentrification and increased consumption, declining diversity and rising inequality, displacement and longer commutes, and multiple environmental health and ecosystem impacts, including habitat fragmentation, loss of groundwater, and increased carbon footprints. Our region, however, is not alone. We bring together a new generation of scholars, planners, and activists addressing ‘the housing question’ and green affordability crises across the Americas —in Mexico City and New York, Seattle and Medellin, Sao Paulo and Oakland— as well as emerging strategies for democratizing the green city.

For more information on the schedule, locations and registrations visit: https://democratizing-the-green-city.sites.ucsc.edu/

Organizers: Miriam Greenberg and Hillary Angelo, UCSC Sociology, Urban Democracy Lab/Democratizing the Green City NYC (NYU), Critical Sustainabilities Project (UCSC)

Sponsors: Urban Democracy Lab, The UCSC Sustainability Office, Rachel Carson College, UCSC Sociology Department, The Science and Justice Research Center

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