World Habitat Day Celebrates ‘Better City, Better Life’

4 October 2010:  The 2010 World Habitat Day was celebrated at the Shanghai World Expo 2010 under the theme "Better City, Better Life."

The event focused on the potential and problems of urban living in the 21st century and  actions and policies that can improve well-being for the billion people who live in slums and other sub-standard housing around the world. In his statement to mark the Day, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon highlighted that better cities can help mitigate global challenges, such as climate change, by promoting energy conservation and environmental sustainability.

In addition, the  World Habitat Awards were presented by UN-Habitat Executive Secretary Inga Bjork-Klevby and Diane Diacon, Director of the Building and Social Housing Foundation, to: the Local Housing Movement Programme, Egypt, which works with low-income communities in Egypt to improve their housing and access to water and sanitation; and the Ekostaden Augustenborg, Sweden, which addresses environmental issues such as flooding and energy inefficiency.

The World Expo 2010 was hosted by China's Ministry of Housing and Urban Rural Development and the Shanghai Municipal Commission of Urban and Rural Construction and Transport. Celebrations to mark World Habitat Day were held in various cities around the world, including Barcelona, Spain, Nakuru, Kenya, and Kathmandu, Nepal. [UN Secretary-General Statement] [UN-Habitat Press Release]