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Lecture 8

Lecture Eight

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Andre Sorensen

Lecture 8 Urban Ecosystems, Pollution Urban Ecosystem Analysis During the last 15 years new understandings of cities as complex ecosystems Cities are now seen as complex organisms with their own metabolic processes They have huge inputs and outputs that are structured by metabolic processes of production, delivery, consumption and waste emission Inputs and outputs can be measured and where necessary can be influenced by public policy It is critical to the understand the nature of inputs and outputs To be able to reduce waste u need to know what is going on in a city- u cannot influence until u know what is happening. Need to understand nature of inputs and outputs Water inputs and outputs Water is one of the most important urban inputs Ensuring quality water supply is important for health Polluted water is one of the main urban outputs One of the key achievements of 19 century sanitary revolution was the development of public water supply and waste water removal infrastructure Initially just pipes to dump water downstream, later primary treatment secondary treatment, tertiary treatment systems were added Polluted water dumped somewhere else which is fine if u dump downstream and u r near a lake, the problem is downstream people will get sick Primary waste treatment was streams, let water and small particulates keep flowing, secondary system= settling ponds , putting bacteria and aerating the water, bacteria metabolized most of the organic matter and the other junk was filtered out ( rubber, paper clips, that doesnt dissolve) so water is actually quite clean. Tertiary systems= take out not just organic stuff but actually toxic material, example heavy metals that goes into sewer systems, organic solvents. Now people are developing ways of cleaning toxic waste out of the
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