Humans have created urban areas right since the ancient times. Urbanization, as we know it now, began with the Industrial Revolution in the 18th century, and has only been on the rise ever since. Statistics tell us that half of the world's people already live in urban areas, with that number set to expand in the years to come. Our cities have been luring people for various reasons, the basic one being the hope of a better life. People are drawn to the cities for the comforts they offer, the opportunities they hold, and the sleek lifestyle they promise.
As cities continue to beckon people from all nooks and corners of the globe, a pertinent question remains to be answered - are our cities crumbling under the pressure? Urbanization, or rather, unplanned urbanization has led to the creation of several problems. Cities in developing countries, in particular, are home to the neo-urban dwellers, and are seen to be bearing the maximum brunt of it all. What follows are a few negative consequences of unstructured urbanization.
Rising Levels of Pollution
Cities have been invariably blamed for their contribution to the disturbing levels of pollution. Densely populated areas, coupled with a scant regard for environmental laws add to the woes. The urban population's daily commute costs the planet hard, with public transport systems failing to deliver, or people simply choosing luxury over sensibility and using private cars, which add to the emission of toxic fumes. Traffic congestion is a perennial problem, with no feasible solution foreseeable in the near future.
Huge cities create enormous amounts of waste, and the urban lifestyle includes creation of waste that is mostly non-biodegradable, thanks to the generous use of plastic wares. This leads to an unprecedented increase in the garbage that stays in our landfills, polluting the soil for years to come.
Countries experiencing a steady growth in population have their specific problems...
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