What it's about:
An Italian architect is proposing to build “Vertical Forest” skyscrapers in the eastern Chinese city of Nanjing. The neighbouring towers will be coated with 23 tree species and more than 2,500 cascading shrubs. They will house offices, apartments and a luxury hotel.
Having completed a similar project in Milan, Stefano Boeri hopes that the innovative, green buildings will suck 25 tonnes of carbon dioxide from Nanjing’s air each year and produce about 60 kg of oxygen every day.
If successful, the architect hopes to extend the project to create sustainable mini-cities in areas such as Guangxi, a mountainous southern province, and Shijiazhuang, an industrial hub in northern China.
The skyscrapers will be completed next year and could provide a green roadmap for the future of urban China.
Why it's noteworthy:
China, a country commonly associated with smog and environmental pollution, is now taking serious steps to redeem its image.
Along with rapidly adopting the 2016 Paris climate change agreement to curb emissions, China has also launched a national campaign to improve air quality.
Measures such as the construction of the "vertical forest" buildings are small but important means by which China can improve air quality and the health of millions of its city dwellers.
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