Smart cities will prioritise sustainability and climate change by 2020, says Gartner

Half of smart cities will include climate change, resilience and sustainability as key performance indicators (KPIs) by 2020, according to Gartneraccording to Gartner.

The technology research firm said last week that cities are defining new objectives and creating tangible programmes, establishing measurable outcomes that meet the targets agreed at the United Nations climate change conference in Paris to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

“With the Horizon 2020 goals of energy efficiency, carbon emission reductions and renewable energy in mind, many cities in Europe have launched energy sustainability, resource management, social inclusion and community prosperity initiatives,” said Bettina Tratz-Ryan, research vice president at Gartner.

Traffic and mobility programmes are one example of smart city projects that can improve city life while also reducing harmful emissions and saving energy.

“The uptake of ride sharing, the electrification of public transportation, the support infrastructure for e-vehicles and congestion charging for combustion engines, all of those examples are driving cleaner air, producing fewer GHG emissions and saving energy, while improving the noise levels and ambience on streets,” Tratz-Ryan explained.

Sensors are at the heart of smart cities and have become a critical element in the execution of climate change goals, Gartner said.

In 2017 an estimated 380 million connected ‘things’ will be in use in cities to deliver sustainability and climate change goals. This figure is predicted to increase to 1.39 billion units by 2020, accounting for 20% of all smart city connected things in use.

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