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Habitat II Conference                      [ Back to Habitat II ]

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IV Global Plan of Action

C. Sustainable human settlements development in an urbanizing world

4. Population and sustainable human settlements development

125. The quality of life and the activities of all human beings within human settlements are closely interrelated with population change, demographic patterns, including growth, structure and distribution of population, and development variables such as education, health and nutrition, the levels of use of natural resources, the state of the environment and the pace and quality of economic and social development.

126. Population movements within and among countries, including the very rapid growth of some cities and the unbalanced regional distribution of population in some areas need to be considered to ensure the sustainability of human settlements.


127. In order to address population issues affecting human settlements and to fully integrate demographic concerns into sustainable human settlements development policies, Governments at the appropriate levels, including local authorities and other interested parties, should:

(a) Ensure that population/demographic issues are appropriately addressed within decision-making processes, especially those dealing with urban and regional planning and management, basic infrastructure and services provision or other related policies;

(b) Where necessary, set up or enhance databases, including, inter alia, data disaggregated by gender and age, and conduct data collection and analysis to provide baseline information that can be used to better plan for population growth in cities, towns and villages;

(c) Increase the awareness, knowledge and understanding of the impact of population change and development variables on human settlements at all levels of society through public information campaigns and communication efforts centred on the significance and relevance of population-related issues and the responsible actions necessary to address such issues, including health, family planning and consumption and production patterns consistent with sustainable development;

(d) Consider the need to plan, design and build sustainable new human settlements, taking into account the environmental impact, to relieve present and obviate future population and development pressures on urban and rural areas.

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