Let’s build inclusive and circular neighborhoods together!
The PIB Circular Neighborhoods California-Netherlands is a public-private partnership and part of the program ‘Partners for International Business’. The partnership includes the Netherlands Enterprise Agency, which is a government agency with access to a global network of embassies, such as the Consulate of the Netherlands in San Francisco. Together with our Californian partners, we hope to develop circular neighborhood solutions for both California and the Netherlands.
From donut economics to rebuilding by design
Cities are the heart of human activity. By 2050, 70 percent of the global population will live in urban areas. Up to three quarters of global resources are consumed by urban activities and they account for 70% of global greenhouse gas emissions. The challenges faced by both Californian and Dutch neighborhoods are manifold. Climate change causes problems like rising temperatures and a lack of water for sanitation and agriculture. While social issues like restricted access to healthy food in so-called food-desserts and affordable housing persist.
Although, in general, urbanization is strongly correlated to increases in wealth and access to better amenities with regard to hygiene, health and nutrition. It also puts pressure on natural and city resources. The solutions lie in a circular approach to building neighborhoods. At the same time, circular neighborhoods also help achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) ─ set to create a fairer and more liveable world for all.
The PIB Circular Neighborhoods Netherlands-California brings together 11 organizations and companies which each play a key role in building the resilient and regenerative cities of the future.
California & the Netherlands
California and the Netherlands share the same progressive, forward-looking mindset. Making them perfect partners to face their common challenges together as rapid population growth in already densely populated areas intensifies. Climate change and pollution disproportionately impact less upwardly mobile residents in cities, adversely affecting standards of living, health and even life expectancy. This can lead to social and political polarization. Adopting circular systems in a neighborhood can help build bridges between communities and reduce our CO2 emissions.
Circular Economy strategies have the potential to offer solutions: they can start small and deliver results ‘close to home’. Solutions can be copied and adapted from one neighborhood to the next, each in their own context and with their own local heroes.
California and the Netherlands alike can benefit from exchanging circular experiences and solutions. Like the Netherlands, the state of California is a frontrunner on sustainability issues and has high ambitions to become more circular. The state already has good waste management and recycling facilities, but now its focus has shifted to include sustainable urban development and ecosystems.