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In the sustainability project, the CERES Educational Park proposal is the better option Report

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Updated: Jan 13th, 2020

Introduction

In the Amcor site, there is an open land on the east side used as for residential purpose. Initially, the site had vast green land with native flora and fauna. However, this is gone and little vegetation remains due to urban encroachment.

The site has been earmarked for development based on either of two proposals. These two proposals are construction of medium density housing or establish an educational park.

As shown in Part B of the Sustainability Project, each of these proposals has pros and cons based on economics, environment and social sectors. Nevertheless, based on analysis one of the proposals seems the better option.

Context

Taking carbon footprint context as the bases of deciding between the two projects proposals, (that is, the medium density housing and the educational park as discussed in Part B); the former (the educational park) is the better option for implementation. The common baseline to understand the carbon footprint hinges on the amount of gaseous emissions that are relevant to climate change and linked to human productivity and consumption activities.

From a broad perspective on environment sustainability, the medium density housing proposal and allied infrastructure will lead to increased carbon emissions as well as competition for resources, while, the educational park will further acts as carbon sinks (SUNY Geneseo, 2011).

Scale analysis

Both spatial and temporal scales are influential in arriving at the final arguement. By having the medium density housing proposal in place, this means there will drammatic rise in the number of residents occupying the available housing space. The demand for resources will also increase.

This will constrain the carbon footprint per person. The amount of resources available to the current residents remains significantly the same even after inclusion of the medium density housing, this will over the time develop into a supply-demand phenomenah and eventually influence the business economics of the area.

In the temporal scale, waste products and the overall net carbon dioxide emissions per hectare from the residents will increase with the extra residential units causing pressure on the sustainability of the area. As discussed in Part B, the net carbon dioxide emissions is as result of consuming fossil fuels, animals, human, bacteria and water vapour (Conversations Network, 2011).

Scientific facts show that the constant earth’s temperature rise (commonly known as global warming) is as a result increased release into the atmosphere of the GreenHouse gases of which carbon dioxide is a component (Wiedmann and Minx, 2007). Global warming measurements are done on annual bases.

In the spatial scale, the educational park proposal provides green spaces and conservation areas. This provides an ecological environment. This is because the spaces provide recreational space.

As indicated in Part B, such open spaces can be for bicycle riding and walking. This is important in lowering the gaseous emissions released through transportation as well as a means of improving their physical fitness. The presence of trees and other flora in the park act as carbon sequester and carbon sinks which aid in air purification.

Presence of flora will attract faunal species like birds and butter flies, which improve the natural beauty of the park (EndPoverty 2015, 2011).

Systems analysis

Systems analysis AMCOR sites in Australia.

There are AMCOR sites in Australia (Amcor Limited, 2011a). At this site, the resources that are under the economic norm include the Pub and the Dan Murphy’s as well as the Commercial Office and small business. These are both spatial and temporal in scale (Embodied water of construction et al., 2004).

In the environment norm, the resources present in the AMCOR site include the Yarra River and the Alphington Park. These are spatial in scale. The football field, Alphington Bowls Club, Alphington Railway Station, Alphington Primary School as well as Yarralea Children’s Centre contribute to the social norm.

Based on the issues mentioned under the three norms (that is, environment, economic and social), they are interlinked and contribute significantly to the carbon footprint.

Role of norms

Carbon footprint is the method used to quantify the total release of greenhouse gases (GHG) in carbon equivalents from a product across its life cycle from the production of raw material used in its manufacture, to disposal of the finished product (Wiedmann and Minx, 2007). The environment, social and economic norms are interlinked. The consumption and productivity of factors influence these norms.

The environment norms provide the ecological resources of flora and fauna. Damming rivers found within the environment can provide safe water for drinking for residents. It is also possible to initiate hydroelectric power generation at the dammed parts of rivers. This can be included in the general grid to suppliment the non-renewable energy sources such as fossil fuel (Wiedmann and Minx, 2007).

This improves on the carbon footprint. Similarly, open spaces in the park can be for installing solar and wind generators. These are environmentally friendly sources of renewable energy due to low air pollution resulting from them.

The low carbon release and carbon sequestration can translate to a carbon offsets project and sell credits to willing buyers. This invokes the Kyoto Protocol under the clean development mechanism and specifically the carbon reduction units. The social norm is achievable in the recreational park.

This is achievable through the open spaces and conservation area. This not only provides opportunity for interaction but also for leisure. This is the green space. The creation of educational park provides the opportunity to sensitize the local residents about the environment and ecosystem.

With improved knowledge, the people become sensitive to the sustainability of the area and the availability of resources. Several factors contribute to the economic norm. These factors function to lower the carbon footprint per person.

The utilization of infrastructure such as rail, road and air as means of transport become sources of pollution especially of greenhouse gasses. However, presence of green spaces counters through carbon sequestration. In the proposal of educational park, the amount of pollution associated with transport is signicantly low as compared to the case of having the additional medium density housing.

This is because of the need to provide extra transport mean to cater for the populace increasing demand. Open spaces provide opportunity for people to use bicycles or walk. This not only becomes a means of cutting down transport costs and better their physical fitness but also improve their carbon footprint.

Furthermore, the creation of more employment opportunities within the educational park raises the living standards of those living arround. However, this may lead to increase in spending for goods and services. There are two ecological costs with this.

First, increase in consumption of resources means this will cause strain on available ecological resources. This may lead to over consumption and depletion of resources. This will consequently lower the carbon footprint per person.

In a controlled environment, monitoring the consumption per person is possible as well as putting a threshold level. Secondly, solid waste and gasseous emissions rise with the consumption this may put strain on the sewerage systems and recycling units (Amcor Limited, 2011b). Livestock keeping leads to release of methane gas, but with the installation of biogas digesters, this can trap the gas, and used for cooking.

The methane gas is a known greenhouse gas thus combusting it reduces global warming effects. The produce from farms provides organic food to people residing arround.

This benefits the local employees and residents through consuming products from organic sales as they less rely on national and regional imports and they can get the products at a relative low price. This will increase local economy.

Use of conceptual tools

The presence of recreational parks is an important composite in promoting community interaction. This creates an arena for socialization and bonding. This strengthens relationship especially those people one is not familiar with.

However, for this to be realised this depends on how well people utilize the facility (that is, the park). This can be assesed based on the people perception towards the facility. To realise the full functions of the parks, depends on the social interaction tools available to trigger socialisation.

The presence of Yarra River and football grounds are example of social interaction tools. The maintenance activities of these recreational facilities will influence their status and this inturn will dictate on the numbers flocking into them (Wiedmann and Minx, 2007). Thus, there is importance to maintain the beauty and attractions available at the park.

This means checks be put in place to ensure the number of people residing or making their visits have insignificant impact on their activities. With the construction of the educational park, this will have little environment impact. This is in contrast to the construction of medium density housing.

Initiating sensitization efforts on green living at the parks raises awareness on environment sustainability. It is possible to extend this into school going children who are educated green practices.

The continuation of such practice brings up an environment conscious society (EndPoverty 2015, 2011). This has a significant positive impact on the sustainability of the site. To achieve better results in conservation of the environment spaces this is continuously repeated.

The park has the potential for generating extra energy sources. Some of these sources rely on the strategic position of the natural resources. For instance, the rivers and the open spaces in these park could be tapped for hydroelectric, solar and wind power.

These sources are renewable and provide clean energy compared to the likes of fossil fuel which when combusted release greenhouse gasses. The industries and residential places running on fossil fuel are the massive polluters of greenhouse gasses (Wiedmann and Minx, 2007). The low carbon release and carbon sequestration can translate to a carbon offsets project and sell credits to willing buyers.

Conclusion

Based on analysis of society, environment and economics, the benefits of implementing an educational park outweigh those of medium density housing. The arguement on the carbon footprint justifies this. The carbon footprint concept is based on resources available and waste handling capacity allocated per person in the Amcor site. The carbon footprint per person is higherfor educational park proposal based on green space allocation, greenhouse gas emissions and solid waste handling.

References

Amcor Limited. (2011a) AMCOR. Web. Available at: .

Amcor Limited. (2011b) Australian National Packaging Covenant Web. Available at: .

Conversations Network. (2011) Environmental Sustainability Educational Podcasts Web. Web.

Embodied water of construction ,Treloar, G. ; McCormack, M.; Palmowski, L. ; Fay, R. (2004) Embodied water of construction. In, Royal Australian Institute of Architects. BDP Environment design guide (pp.1-8). Royal Australian Institute of Architects

EndPoverty 2015. (2011) Environmental Sustainability Web. Web.

SUNY Geneseo. (2011) What is Environmental Sustainability? Web. Available at:

Wiedmann, T and Minx, J. (2007) A Definition of ‘Carbon Footprint’. Web. Web.

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IvyPanda. "In the sustainability project, the CERES Educational Park proposal is the better option." January 13, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/in-the-sustainability-project-the-ceres-educational-park-proposal-is-the-better-option/.

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IvyPanda. 2020. "In the sustainability project, the CERES Educational Park proposal is the better option." January 13, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/in-the-sustainability-project-the-ceres-educational-park-proposal-is-the-better-option/.

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IvyPanda. (2020) 'In the sustainability project, the CERES Educational Park proposal is the better option'. 13 January.

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