Urban Design – Built Form and Accessibility

The  city provides residents with walkable access between safe and affordable housing, basic urban services, and open/green space. It demonstrates environmentally friendly transport options and provides walking and transit access to close-by employment.

Clean Air

The city maintains a level of air quality that is conducive to good health within buildings, the city’s air shed, and atmosphere.

Clean and Renewable Energy

Energy is provided for, and extracted, generated and consumed without significant negative impact to ecosystems or to short or long-term human health and does not exacerbate climate change.

Healthy and Accessible Food

Sufficient amounts of healthy and nutritious food are accessible to all and are grown, manufactured, distributed and recycled by processes which maintain the healthy function of ecosystems and do not exacerbate climate change.


Responsible Resources/Materials

Non-food and non-energy renewable and non-renewable resources are sourced, allocated, managed and recycled responsibly and equitably, and without adversely affecting human health or the resilience of ecosystems.


Healthy Soil

Soils functions and operations meet their ranges of healthy ecosystem functions as appropriate to their types and environments; fertility is maintained or improved.

Clean and Safe Water

Residents have sufficient and continuous access to convenient and affordable clean drinking-water and domestic use water; city water sources, waterways and waterbodies are healthy and function without negative impact to ecosystems.

Healthy Culture

Cultural activities that strengthen eco-literacy, patterns of human knowledge and creative expression are facilitated, symbolic thought and social learning is developed.

Community Capacity/Governance

Full and equitable community participation is supported in decision making processes along with legal, physical and organizational support for neighborhoods, community organizations, institutions and agencies to enhance their capacities.

Healthy and Equitable Economy

The city’s economy consistently favors economic activities that reduce harm and positively benefit the environment and human health and support a high level of local and equitable, formal and informal employment options.

Lifelong Education

Residents have access to lifelong education including access to information about history of place, culture, ecology, and tradition provided through formal and informal education, vocational training and other social institutions.

Quality of Life

Residents report satisfaction with their quality of life including employment, the built, natural and landscaped environment, physical and mental health, education, safety, recreation and leisure, and social belonging.

Healthy Biodiversity

Biodiversity of local, bioregional and global ecosystems is sustained, including species diversity, ecosystem diversity and genetic diversity; natural habitat and biodiversity is restored.

Earth’s Carrying Capacity

Demands on ecosystems are within the limits of the Earth’s bio-capacity, resources are converted restoratively and support regional ecological integrity.

Ecological Integrity

Essential linkages within and between ecosystems are maintained and provide contiguous habitat areas and ecological corridors.

An innovative vision for an ecologically-restorative human civilization as well as a practical methodology for assessing and guiding progress towards the goal

Ecocity Builders and the Ecocity Standards are now at the forefront of global discussions on sustainable cities development. At the same time, we have maintained our grassroots base with existing and new partnerships with our early partner cities, with like minded nonprofits, and with our constituents in the San Francisco Bay Area. In order to successfully roll out the Ecocity Standards in a transparent manner with a high level of participation at the international scale while ramping up visibility and influence through its next stage of development, testing and implementation, Ecocity Builders will seek to continue to develop organizational capacity, funding, programs and processes for collaboration with other stakeholders, including the public sector, foundations and the private sector.

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