July 2012: A new report from the McKinsey Global Institute, Urban world: Cities and the rise of the consuming class highlights that:
“Because of higher living standards in cities, per capita urban energy and resource consumption is likely to grow faster in cities than in nations overall…Fortunately, densely populated cities can be very efficient at satisfying resource demand for a given income level.
“McKinsey research has found that there is potential to boost the energy efficiency of buildings globally that would reduce energy demand by 31 quadrillion British thermal units, 20 percent more than the global use of energy by shipping and air transportation. Improving the energy efficiency of residential and commercial buildings could deliver around one-fifth of the total $2.9 trillion opportunity to resource productivity by 2030. Again, cities can capture the majority of these benefits.”