SEVENSEAS Marine Conservation & Travel Issue 14, July 2016 - Page 87

espite what your favorite doomsday movie might suggest, resisting the forces of nature to ensure a future for our cities might actually involve innovative solutions that work in harmony

with nature.

It is estimated that almost 70% of the human population will live in cities by the year 2050. According to the United Nations, in 1990, ten megacities, urban areas housing a population of ten million people or more, existed and were home to 153 million people, or about seven percent of the world’s population. In 2014, twenty-eight megacities were accounted for and housed 453 million people, or about twelve percent of the urban population. By 2030, a little more than a decade from now, the UN estimates the number of megacities will jump to forty-one. Smaller cities matter too, though. In fact, some estimates point to six billion people living in cities by the year 2050. To put that number into perspective, about six billion people inhabited the entire planet in the year 2000. 6 billion is a lot of people to feed, transport, house, clean up after, provide electricity for, keep safe, and stand in line for coffee with.