Future Ecology Designed

Sustainable design theory manifested in products, infrastructure, and graphic representation. A utopian glimpse of a future New Zealand where environmental considerations are of tantamount importance, and society is designed to accommodate the native ecosystem.

Eco Auckland - The cold, hard facts

  • Pollution from vehicles alone accounts for an estimated 250 premature deaths in Auckland every year.
  • Every month the Auckland region creates enough rubbish to fill a rugby field to over the height of a 10-storey building.
  • Each year over 85,000 tonnes of sediment enters our streams, lakes, estuaries and harbours. In Auckland, sediment is the biggest cause of shellfish die-off in estuarine environments.
  • Auckland is the weediest city in the Southern Hemisphere.
  • Only 12% of our total land area in the Auckland region is native forest. (this isn't that bad I think)
  • The Auckland region has 56 threatened animal species and 105 threatened plant species.
  • 80% of peak hour cars only have the one driver in them. (Count me in..)
  • It is estimated that over 45,000 cigarette butts enter out harbour every day. Each year 25 million cigarette butts are washed into the sea. (people trowing their butts out the window while driving. grrrr)
  • Every year over 1000 native fish are killed as a result of storm water pollution.
  • New Zealanders use over 22 million plastic bags each week and about 800 million plastic bags a year, most of which end up in the landfill. Plastic bags will take 500 years to break down.

- Taken from citymix magazine, September 2006

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2 Responses to “Eco Auckland - The cold, hard facts”

  1. # Blogger Nikolai H


    This is interesting. I'd say in Aukland's case it's the result of unbridled property development leading to sprawl. That said, I'm a believer in the value of high urban density done well, and that may account for a high figure too. Of course, surrounding areas should be allowed to 'return to nature', and this would bring the figure down (look at Waikato, fairly close to AKL in real terms). Is it worthwhile sacrificing the footprint of cities, for more efficient land use elsewhere? It might be more effective to view this more regionally, for instance upper and lower N. Island, upper and lower S. Island. As an example, Canturbury has an excellent rating despite including Christchurch- it's a huuuge region.

    Re. Stormwater, here's a map of impervious coverage in blue:

    I agree that 12% native forest is probably better than it sounds. Especially considering this is most likely by zone, so not taking into account planting in urban areas/ fringes.  

  2. # Blogger Nikolai H

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