building a sustainable and resilient community

On the future of ecocities

Posted on | July 26, 2010 | No Comments

Interesting news today out of the United Arab Emirates, where Abu Dhabi has been trying to build the world’s first real “ecocity” from scratch in the 50,000 person Masdar.   Applied Materials last week announced the end of its SunFab solar business, thus effectively killing the manufacturing lines on which Masdar PV was relying.  This marks another recent troubled episode in what was once a very promising project;  Masdar was supposed to be zero-waste, zero-emissions, car free, and powered by 100% renewable energy… a pioneer in the long and costly search for a solution to net-zero living.  (Greentech Media sums up its initial goals and recent set-backs succinctly here.)

All is not necessarily lost though… Abu Dhabi, as the article states, is in fact, loaded, so where there is not a way, there is a bank account to make a way.   Still, will the richest Emirate find tenants to actually move into Masdar?  I hope so, for the sake of this grand experiment, because I would like to see if it’s actually possible.  And since Abu Dhabi seems to be the only ones with enough money to make it happen, I’m rooting for them.



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