The Sustainable Development of the Baltic Sea Region Cities in Comparison with World and European Experiences
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At the beginning of the 21st century, we are facing a new stage in city constructing. It is necessary to build cities for everyone. They should be environmentally safe and efficient, they should promote health and social fairness, and should respond to the economic needs of society. We need to build the sustainable city. A city in general is the most complex phenomenon that man has created. It addresses major needs of civilisation - economic development and culture of human interaction. At the same time it is also burdened with major problems of environmental management and social structure. A new understanding of good urban planning and community life addresses major problems that emerged during the last decades. It deals with traffic flows and infrastructure; the cultures of citizenship and city administration; economic development and social integration; environmental issues and resource and waste flows and the concepts of cultural roots and identity. Sustainable human settlements development requires a coherent and pro-active policy approach to housing, land-use, infrastructure, urban services, and environment. The article is presenting appropriate steps taken by different international organisations, such as: The Baltic University Urban Forum (BUUF), the Union of Baltic Cities, the European Union, EUROCITIES, The United Nations, UN-HABITAT (United Nations Human Settlements Program), World Commission on Environment and Development of UN (WCED) United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) the Baltic University Program, Agenda 21, Baltic 21, CBSS, VASAB 2010, World Assembly of Cities and Local Authorities and others. UN-HABITAT strengthened its relationship with the European Union. For the past three years both organisations have been engaged in a process of reinforcing collaboration in the implementation of the Habitat Agenda and achievement of the Millennium Development Goals, with specific reference to urban poverty reduction. On 15th of September, 2004 UN-HABITAT and the European Commission- Research Directorate launched a joint publication on “Creating a World of Sustainable Cities”. It is marking the beginning of a further stage in the ongoing co-operation between UN-HABITAT and the European Union. Since all the BSR countries (except Russia) are members of the EU, this co-operation should be reflected in suitable B21 resolutions and activities.
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