Keywords: ecosystem services, employment patterns, eco-efficiency, urban ecosystems, New Zealand, employment structure, resource use, land use, energy use, waste generation, metropolitan areas, urban growth
Implications of changing employment patterns on urban ecosystem service requirements: a study of Greater Christchurch
The world is becoming increasingly urbanised. As settlements expand in size and complexity, planners face increasingly challenging issues, like urban 'sprawl', traffic congestion, increasing demand for employment opportunities, loss of a sense of community, and pressure on critical infrastructure and environmental resources. Many metropolitan areas have developed strategies to cope with this ongoing urban growth. A common focus of these is to consider the need to create employment opportunities, but this ignores the future impact of changing employment patterns on the ecosystem service requirements of that city. Here, we investigate the question, 'What impact does employment structure have on a city's ecosystem service requirements?' by exploring the notion of ecosystem services. We use the Greater Christchurch metropolitan areas as a case study to investigate and understand the link between employment structure and a city's resource use. Specifically, we investigate land use, energy use and waste generation.