„The hunger of the Moloch“

The PNAS paper by Felix Creutzig has received a lot of media attention: The BBC, Haaretz and the SZ – among others – reported on it.

[Translate to EN:] Foto: Shutterstock / Gary Yim


Under the headline „The Hunger of the Moloch“ the “Süddeutsche Zeitung” picks up one of the key findings of the PNAS paper „A Global Typology of Urban Energy Use and Potentials for an Urbanization Mitigation Wedge” by Felix Creutzig: If current urbanization trends continue, urban energy use will more than triple by 2050.

„This is the first representative and global comparison of climate mitigation options for cities on a local level. The goal would be that each city classifies itself in a specific group und realizes, what it could change”, he says.

Interviewed by the „Deutschlandfunk“ Creutzig explains that especially in the rapidly growing cities in Asia urban planning could achieve a lot – as could higher fuel prices. “Low fuel prices make people move out of the city centers and higher fuel prices make them live closer. So the fuel price could be stimulation for a more compact city, thus saving energy.”

Asked by the BBC the MCC scientist amplifies this aspect. "I think one of the central problems is that every city tends to view climate change and energy consumption as their own local problem. It would make it a lot more feasible to achieve (climate) targets if we had the infrastructure that did not require so much energy."

„Haaretz“ touches in its coverage on a regional aspect. Quoting Creutzig indirectly the Israeli paper writes as for cooling the blazing cities of the Middle East, urban design is perhaps more important than advanced technology, for example by factoring in the direction the wind blows, and channeling the wind through the streets, Creutzig says. "Currently China is emitting a lot of energy from industry. But in 20 years China could move to a higher share of transmission from buildings and transportation." “Haaretz concludes: “It's crucial to lock in clever urban policies now.”

You can access the article in the "Süddeutsche Zeitung" here.

You can access the audio file of the Deutschlandfunk here.

You can acces the online article of the BBC here.

You can access the article in "Haartez" here.

You can access the article in "Der Standard" here.

You can access the article in "Scientific American" here.

You can access the article in "Le Science" here.


Reference of the cited article:

 Creutzig, Felix; Baiocchi, Giovanni; Bierkandt, Robert; Pichler, Peter-Paul; Seto, Karen (2015): A Global Typology of Urban Energy Use and Potentials for an Urbanization Mitigation Wedge, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1315545112