The global south is where the bulk of urbanization will happen over the next 30 years. India will add over 200 million people — the equivalent of 20 new megacities — to its urban population between 2011 and 2036, up from 377 million to 594 million. By 2050, Africa’s urban population will almost triple, accounting for 21% of the global total. In tandem, new infrastructure and property will have to be built. How carbon resilient this new urban expanse will be, and how carbon intensive, will depend on how it is planned and designed.

In the piece for Devex, Sam Downes argues that cities in the global south need to placed at the centre of the climate agenda, or the global quest for decarbonisation may fall flat.