The U.N. Convention on Biological Diversity has posted a second review draft of a forthcoming report on cities and biodiversity. Entitled “A Global Assessment of the Links between Urbanization, Biodiversity, and Ecosystem Services,” the report includes a strong list of “key messages,” each of which is elaborated in this draft:
- Urbanization is both a challenge and an opportunity to manage humanity’s ecological footprint.
- Rich biodiversity can exist in cities.
- Biodiversity and ecosystem services represent critical natural capital.
- Urban ecosystems significantly improve human health.
- Incorporating biodiversity and ecosystems in urban planning and design helps reduce carbon emissions and enhance adaptation to climate change.
- Food and nutrition security depend on local and biodiversity-based food systems.
- Ecosystem functions must be integrated in urban policy and planning.
- Successful management of biodiversity and ecosystem services includes all levels and all sectors.
- Cities offer unique opportunities for learning and education about a resilient and sustainable future.
- Cities have a large potential to generate innovations and governance tools and therefore can — and must — take the lead in sustainable development.
H/t to Timon McPhearson’s recent article on the group blog The Nature of Cities.