Back to the Future? Sustainability and NYC

Imagine going to sleep and waking up 30 years later. What would sustainability in New York City look like?

Recent SIPA grad Roberto Leal (MPA ESP ’11) looks insightfully ahead in an essay submitted to “Energy for Tomorrow,” an online debate and competition sponsored by Time, Fortune and Shell. Writers were asked to explore energy innovations in the urban environment and how they will affect consumer behavior. Leal’s essay has advanced to the final round.

Leal tells the story of a student who wakes up in the future “to find a sustainable urban environment where consumer trends have adapted to environmental demands: environmentally friendly transport is fuelled by clean energy, new innovations in the power sector have resulted in its decentralization, renewable energy abounds and everyday products are grown in urban farms.”