BiodiverCities is a project in the context of the EU Biodiversity Strategy. It aims to enhance civil society participation in local and urban decision-making, leading to building a joint vision of the green city of tomorrow shared among civil society, scientists and policymakers. The project will collect practical examples of how to engage citizens in vision building around urban nature, monitoring, and solutions to improve urban biodiversity. It will also assess how urban green infrastructure can be used to provide local benefits for people and nature and how can it contribute to enhancing regional biodiversity. BiodiverCities is funded by a grant of the European Parliament. It is implemented by the Joint Research Centre and DG Environment. Our ambition is to deliver a roadmap to enhance the biodiversity and green infrastructure of European cities by 2030.
Palma, the biggest city on the Spanish island Mallorca, is one of the BiodiverCities. The Palma BiodiverCities team succeeded in bringing the debate on biodiversity into heart of the city descision-making and to raise awareness for biodiversity.
Neus Truyol, member of the Palma city council, said: "The EU support for a city model that is committed to conceiving the city as an ecosystem, self-sufficient and resilient to the climate emergency, strengthens us to continue the work path we have set in motion.”
The Palma BiodiverCities team is currently assessing the following... Read more about The city council of Palma endorses the BiodiverCities project
The 3rd annual Citizen Engagement & Deliberative Democracy Festival is an open online event that brings together people of diverse backgrounds that are interested in, and... Read more about 3rd Citizen Engagement and Deliberative Democracy Festival
The EU Green Week conference, the central EU event dedicated to environment policy, is taking place from 19 to 22 October 2020, in an entirely virtual format, on the theme of nature and biodiversity. Join three days of exciting virtual discussions on how protecting and restoring nature can stimulate recovery and create jobs, helping us to build more resilient and healthier societies.
After the adoption of a new EU Biodiversity Strategy for 2030 in May... Read more about Join the #EUGreenWeek 2020 virtual conference, registrations are open!
Do you need to map individual urban trees? Here are some tools and methods that use modern data technology.
Treepedia: Exploring the Green Canopy in cities around the world. Treepedia measures the canopy cover in cities. Rather than count the individual number of trees, we’ve developed a scaleable and universally applicable method by analyzing the amount of green perceived while walking down the street. The visualization maps street-level perception only, so your favorite parks aren't included! Presented here is... Read more about Tools to map urban trees
Planting urban forests can boost biodiversity, help mitigate climate change, contribute to a cleaner air, and cool cities during heath waves. Above all, it looks like a lot of fun to plant and take care of these mini-forests with citizens or schools to green neighbourhoods. A good idea for BiodiverCities?
More on minitature urban forests here. A nice video by WEF is on their twitter page. Read more about Planting of mini-forests in cities is growing in popularity
Cities can take effective measures to increase biodiversity. For instance, the city of Leuven, Belgium, signed the Bye Bye Grass charter. This charter motivates businesses to turn monoculture grass lawns into flower-rich meadows which are better for climate and for biodiversity. This means less mowing, sawing specific seeds, and allow weeds to partially take over. Also citizens can help make cities a little bit wilder by turning ever green gardens into flower fields.
The Bye bye Grass charter is available in Dutch but a press kit is... Read more about Bye bye grass: a charter to to turn urban green deserts into flower rich meadows
Together with other 12 European cities Varese is part of BiodiverCities promoted by the European Parliament. The project aims at improving civil society participation in decision-making related to the deployment of urban green infrastructure.
Thanks to the collaboration between LIPU (Lega italiana protezione uccelli – Italian association for birds protection) and GIO (Gruppo Insubrico Ornitologia, a local ornithology association) Varese is setting up a citizen science activity for swift data collection and mapping.
The objective of the activity is to raise awareness between... Read more about Varese News reports on BiodiverCities and on the citizen science initiative on swifts
On 20 May 2020 , the European Commission adopted a new biodiversity strategy to 2030. It sets ambitious targets to protect more nature, to restore ecosystems and to step up governance, monitoring and global efforts.
The urban dimension is now well recognised in the new biodiversity policy.
As part of a wider nature restoration plan, more focus will go to cities. To bring nature back to cities and reward community action, the Commission will motivate cities to develop... Read more about The EU's 2030 Biodiversity Strategy has now also urban biodiversity targets
The BiodiverCities project has invited ten cities to participate in citizen engagement activities that improve urban nature. The cities are Leiden, Palma, Valongo, Stavanger, Vilnius, Sofia, Maribor, Novi Sad, Palermo and Regalbuto. Also Oslo, Varese and Lisbon are committed to closely follow the project.
Curious to see in which countries the BiodiverCities are situated. Discover them on the map.
The different BiodiverCities will each set up activities to better engage citizens in their urban biodiversity policies. Citizens can help in many ways: By monitoring urban species... Read more about These BiodiverCities will jointly work with citizens to improve urban nature.