Article of the UIA Knowledge base Edit 16 October 2020 by UIA Permanent Secretariat

4 articles, 4 projects, 4 inspiring practices rethinking urban and nature relationship

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With the consequences of climate change and biodiversity loss, many challenges are ahead for EU cities. Read more about how UIA projects are testing new solutions to prepare cities and communities to cope with the challenges of climate change, rethinking the place and importance of nature in the urban fabric.

The EU Green Week 2020 edition focuses on nature and biodiversity, acknowledging their economic and social benefits to the society, and further enhancing the role they can play in supporting and stimulating recovery in a post-pandemic world. Beside the link between biodiversity loss and emerging infectious diseases, the global lockdown experienced by most of EU countries further enhanced urban areas’ reliability on biodiversity and ecosystems regarding their livability. Plants help to clean the air, water and soil play a significant role in the carbon cycle and reduce urban heat islands, lowering the temperature of entire neighborhoods by several degrees during hot weather and provide physical and psychological benefits to urban dwellers. Acknowledging these benefits, UIA cities test bold solutions that lie between strengthening the place of biodiversity in cities to raise awareness (OASIS project) and therefore increase the comfort of city dwellers (IGNITION project), while rewilding public spaces (GreenQuays project) so that nature can regain its place, mitigating climate crisis effects (GUARDIAN project), and protect us in the future.

This month, get to know more about 4 UIA projects inspiring approaches to such vivid challenges rethinking the urban and nature relationship.

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Back-to-School(yard)! In this web article, Maria Sitzoglou, UIA expert, explores how OASIS rewilding approach of school yards brings back outdoor learning practices as an option to reconnect with nature and deal with the sanitary crisis risks. To what extent rewilding 10 asphalt-covered schoolyards can transform them in learning spaces?

OASIS

Can trees grow in walls? With upcoming climate change impacts, such as prolonged heat waves and more severe and frequent flooding risks, more green and blue infrastructure is needed in the city of Breda. In this web article, Birgit Georgi, UIA expert, dive into one of the nature based solutions implemented by the project: rewilding quay walls.

Can tree grow in walls

Park and green spaces were much missed during COVID 19 restriction. But does citizens are fully aware of all nature benefits? This zoom-in presents the results of a study led by the project team to better understand the knowledge and perception of citizens and their needs regarding biodiversity and nature-based solutions. 

Manchester

Mitigating fire risk in wildland-urban interfaces with recycled water. In her 1st Journal, Elsa Pastor, UIA expert of the GUARDIAN project, shares her thoughts on the project’s combined strategy based on the use of recycled water for fire mitigation and protection, providing preventive irrigation and extinction water patterns to preserve the Natural Park of Túria and La Vallesa.

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Watch the UIA playlist to get to know more about project solutions against climate change consequences!

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