Policy, Building Capability

Policy sets the agenda for the planning, procurement, delivery, maintenance and disposal of infrastructure that is sustainable.

Sustainable development needs to be driven from two distinctly different starting points. Affluence and over-consumption gives rise to the “green” (earth) agenda. This focuses on reducing the environmental impact of urban-based production, consumption and water-generation. Poverty and underdevelopment gives rise to the “brown” (people) agenda. This highlights the need to reduce the environmental threats to health that arise from the poor sanitary conditions, crowding, inadequate water provision, hazardous air and water pollution, and accumulations of solid waste.

Civil engineers can contribute to both the “green” and “brown” agenda throughout the life cycle of a project. These processes must not only be responsive to sustainable development imperatives but also capable of delivering and maintaining infrastructure more efficiently.

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