Sustainability Goals

Sustainable development is a reoccurring theme in stated  development goals for Cambodia and of Phnom Penh. What does sustainable development mean? What are the characteristics of a sustainable city? A sustainable building? Can Phnom Penh become ‘sustainable’ and how? Provide sustainability guidelines for the future of the city.


Phnom Penh Sustainability Guidelines

1-Jet Odrerir

Phnom Penh already has so much going for it that sustainability should be relatively easy. The topography is very flat which cuts down on transportation costs and building costs. There is plentiful water resources so providing water to the city can be held to a minimum. Being in close proximity to major population centers in neighboring countries as well as being at the confluence of three major rivers should keep transport costs low when doing trade. Its ample sunlight is an energy resource just waiting to be tapped.

My proposals would be relatively simple.

  1. Develop a system of mass transit such as electric mini busses that would have routes that could be developed over the course of a few years to hone the system to its utmost potential.
  2. Redevelop the solid waste landfills into sorting and recycling centers. Many people already collect the ‘low hanging fruit’ in the city, the easily found plastic and aluminum but much more could be found. More jobs, less tonnage in the landfills.
  3. Modernize the sewage system. This is currently being done but an emphasis on having grey water and black water systems needs to be in place. This process saves greatly on resources in the long run.
  4. Develop wind farms on nearby food farms. Avian populations are relatively small, which would minimize impact.
  5. Incentivize solar use. Breaks could be made by the EDC on KWH pricing for landowners who install solar systems. Homeowners could get a tax break on their homeowner’s tax if they install solar systems.
  6. Have a yearly competition for the development of improved pedi-transport. Viable designs may create an industry benefitting local business. Noise and pollution could be greatly reduced in the city.
  7. Designate certain streets as pedestrian only and two-wheeled and pedestrian traffic only. Steep curbs and pole barriers easily accomplish this.
  8. Encourage more planting of shade trees throughout the city. Put together a campaign to encourage food gardens on rooftops.
  9. Develop community organizations in every Sangkat. Not only would these local groups be able to get vital information to people on the local level but they would be able to address issues that are particular to their unique area.


2. Phok Chandara

Sustainability: is a designed with consideration of environmental impact, inhabited by people dedicated to minimization of required inputs of energy, water and food, waste, output of heat, air pollution – CO2, methane, and water pollution. In other hand, it is developments that meet the needs of the present without sacrificing the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.

Propose Idea for Phnom Penh:

  • Transportation:

– Use Public Transportation to reduce traffic jams and spending money for own vehicle’s fuel.

– Walking or bicycling for a short distance place.

– Follow the traffic rules while driving; also reduce traffic jams and accidents.

  • Energy Conservation:

– Take advantage of natural daylight when possible. Open the blinds and turn off the lights.

– Consider using desk lamps (“task lighting”) and reducing overhead lighting in the room.

– Replace incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent light bulbs where possible.

– If we spend a lot of time working at a computer, dim the lights in our room so we can easily see our computer screen without turning up the brightness level.

– Turn off lights when leaving a room.

– Unplug all electrical appliances when not in use.

  • Waste Management:

– Separate the garbage and put it in the bin.

– Don’t litter at both private and public area.

– Treatments of wastewater before leave it to the public sewages.


3. Kim Na Lae

The more and more people are now living in cities. Urban life can be more energy efficient than suburban or rural life. However, they can cause rapid inequality that poor or poorer residents may never leave rural area.

Cambodia has a strong dependence on its natural resources: Water, forests, soil and land. However, over the past decade, Cambodia’s natural environment has faced different threats such as uncontrolled and illegal logging, over-fishing and illegal fishing practices, biodiversity loss, weak natural resource policies and management, etc.

Sustainability is the balance of social, economic and environmental needs of present and future generations.

There are six principles of sustainable urban living listed as follows

1)      Compactness: the more compact, densely developed cities are less auto dependent, less expensive to serve with infrastructure, put less pressure on farmland, forest and environmentally sensitive area.

2)      Completeness: the community should be more complete to reduce the segregation of urban activities. This will give opportunity to residents to work and shop in close proximity from their houses. It eliminates long commuting time, reduces traffic congestion, air pollution, energy use, water pollution as well as psychic stress

3)      Conservation : this involves protection of environmentally sensitive areas.

4)      Comfort: it is important to create public space and route that are pleasant for pedestrian and non-auto users.

5)      Coordination

6)      Collaboration


4- Phnom Penh Sustainability (Nou Muniroth)

Phnom Penh is a sustainable city when everyone knows about it and involve in it.

Phnom Penh is one of a developing country in South-East Asia. The need of natural resources consumption is in a high demand due to the growing of the city. Therefore the resources that meet the current needs have to be ensured that it will not be affected for the next generation. What people are doing now is part of the future, sustainable design performing an important role in the environmental aspects. But without the acknowledgement or awareness of the people in the city this task will not be success.

The process of chopping down the trees, burning gasoline, oil usage are in demand during the process of manufacturing all the materials (stone, brick, wood, steel, concrete…etc.) and the process of the construction. Even though we cannot prevent the process from occurring, but we can reduce the amount of using it by recycle, re-use the material.

Sustainable design must be introduce and contribute to the society within the design process, construction process and the using process. These three processes are really necessary to solve the environmental issue in the present and in the future and it need all the human civilization to contribute in this activity to make a great success.

Architects and Engineers need to be aware of the design and construction technique to achieve the sustainable design. Furthermore, persuading and the acknowledging their customers or clients to this kind of design are also important to evolve in the activities. Regarding the choice of choosing the materials in the design is a crucial step that can be effect to the environment. Recycle or re-use material should be considered in every design and more importantly, try to use maximum of the local materials, long life span, easy to maintain and not effect to the environment.

How to achieve the goals? The main guidelines are:

-Introduce what is sustainable design and its advantages to the all the citizens

-The enhancement of government and NGO

-Private sector, NGO, and government need to work together make the project more possible

-Analysis all the obstacle of the projects and comes up with the solution

Introduce what is sustainable design to the all the citizens

By using all kind of media such as, TV, internet, billboard, school programs, the message need to be delivered to all the citizens especially the children and their parents.

The enhancement of government and NGO

Government and NGO are the two sectors that lead and broadcast this important message to the local people. By using these two organization’s power, resource, and management, there will be a huge step forward of the projects.

Government should provide special offer such as:

-Decrease the tax for importing or manufacturing the recycle material

-Give reward to the a particular house every year that have a good design regarding sustainability

-Free consultation with professional worker regarding the sustainable design

-Adding to kid programs about sustainable design in class and TV program to inspire them

-Set regulation within building construction to integrate and approach to the sustainable design

-Work closely to the local people and create idea for design (NGO’s task)

-Inform and show the technique of using the recycle materials to all citizens

 Private sector, NGO, and government need to work together make the project more possible

The project will be successful when each and every community works together through the same goal and share experiences. By working together as a team it will an advantage of sharing ideas or information and see how the strategies that are using effective or not.

Analysis all the obstacle of the projects and comes up with the solution

By highlighting the interference of the projects, it helps save the time and resource to complete the missions. This tasks has be involve by environmental designer, and there job will be the key to lead the design to the right direction. Moreover, we need to keep tracking of all the progression or result to make the project stronger and effective.


5- Niem Sompong

Phnom Penh: What is Sustainability?

The terms Sustainable and Sustainability are used to describe many different approaches toward improving our way of life.

Phnom Penh Sustainability: Coping with natural disasters

I recognize that natural disasters, which take heavy tolls in terms of human lives, sufferings and displacement of poor communities and economic losses, are major concerns for sustainable development. We call for appropriate measures to ensure that populations suffering the consequences natural disasters, severe environmental degradation and other relevant humanitarian emergencies are given every assistance and protection so that they can resume normal life as soon as possible. We also call for measures including the establishment of early warning systems, the use of modern technologies, including satellite technology, and the implementation of effective mechanisms for managing disaster situations including establishment of national comprehensive hazard and risk management plans, and mitigating their effects, including, as appropriate, regional cooperation on joint ocean and climate research and observation, to be part of sustainable development strategies of affected countries in the region.


6-visal (

To me sustainability is about energy consumption and the affect that create when consuming those energy. I believe a energy sustainability have to be cheap and effective. Wind Plant is a good example for sustainability due to cost and durability. The fuel use for car is a form of energy consumption that it not proper monitor the longer your engine is running the more energy is use. Phnom Penh due to heavy traffic and a lot of people use a car a lot of energy is being use up daily and affect the sustainability of the city:

Here are my proposals to help reduce energy consumption in vehicle:

Restricted regulation for transportation:

-—Bus must stay out of city center (to reduce the traffic problem)

-—Have a clear lane for different type of vehicle

-—Give smaller road to the motor bike, car no longer allow running on those road

-—Have a restrict perimeter for roadside shop/ food stall. (e.g.: offset 3 meters from the side walk to set up a stall)

—-A truck must contain at least 80% of its storage to allow for transportation on long distance.

Method to improve energy consumption on car:

-—All vehicle must be check monthly/ annually for it engine to prevent old engine running on the road that consume too much energy and produce too much pollution.

-—Encourage public transportation

-—Improve large scale delivery system(train, larger truck, ship?)

—-Maintain traffic on national high way to create smooth movement….

-—Maintaining local material to help reduce transportation to further location…


About phnompenh2012

I'm the capital of Cambodia.


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