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SustainableEnergy on urban development

Urban projects

The focus in the urban projects is to empower communities and civil-society organisations in the informal settlements; building up strong relationships among NGOs and CBOs operating in these areas.

Civil-society groups are encouraged and trained in planning methods that enable them to set priorities for their most pressing problems. We also help them to decide on technical solutions, financial aspects, and implementation of environmental projects.

Urban development

As engines of economic growth and innovation, urban centres contribute greatly to social and economic development at national and local levels. Providing significant economies of scale, they absorb two-thirds of the population growth and offer opportunities of jobs, housing, and services for many.

As such, Africa’s cities constitute important centres of productivity and social advancement.

Urban areas in most African countries, however, have experienced high concentrations of population with inadequate, poorly maintained physical infrastructure such as housing, social facilities, utilities, and amenities.Consequently, the urban environment has been seriously degraded and is prone to a wide variety of hazards.

Providing access to a clean environment

Today, two-thirds of Africa’s urban population is forced to live in informal, highly dense settlements, without adequate physical infrastructure.
The problems facing the urban poor are characterised by harsh life conditions:

  • High building densities. Most houses are also overcrowded.
  • No safe and effective management of solid and liquid wastes; unreliable or insufficient provision of domestic water; and contamination of most of the water that is available
  • Insufficient storm water-drainage systems, causing widespread flooding of ground floors, walkways, open spaces, and roads, as well as sewer backups in flood situations.
  • Dangerous and unpleasant air pollution from local or neighbouring workshops or production units.
  • Lack of safe and adequate recreational areas for kids, youth, and adults.


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