Nature for Climate & Biodiversity in Cities: Entrepreneurship, co-creation & engagement

Wednesday, 3 November 2021 - 3:30 to 4:30 (Europe/Brussels)

Nature-based solutions -NbS- are crucial for cities to jointly address the climate and biodiversity crises, while creating quality green jobs and wellbeing for local communities. This COP26 EU Side Event features different sector practitioners (policy makers, entrepreneurs, international organizations) delivering inspiring presentations and engaging in a panel discussion highlighting a variety of perspectives on key challenges, opportunities, and pathways to mainstream urban NbS and boost local economies.

This online session is hosted by the EU Pavilion at COP26. The session revolves around the role of urban nature-based solutions to address the climate and biodiversity crises, create quality green jobs, and bring about holistic wellbeing. It is jointly organized by representatives of three Horizon2020 consortia INTERLACE, CONEXUS and Connecting Nature, as well as FIDIC (International Federation of Consulting Engineers).

The core questions guiding the event are the following: How do we bring more nature into cities to achieve climate and biodiversity goals? How can we meaningfully engage civil society and business to this end? How can they work together with local governments to enact adequate policy? What are the key opportunities, challenges and pathways to mainstream urban NbS?

The event is moderated by Ewa Iwaszuk (Ecologic Institute), Sandra Naumann (Ecologic Institute) and Sean Vincent Kelly (Glasgow City Council) will provide opening remarks

The event will start with a series of inspiring presentations from different sector practitioners (cities, entrepreneurs, engineers), that will reflect on how to bring more nature to cities, to achieve climate and biodiversity goals from a variety of perspectives including: entrepreneurship and innovation, citizen engagement and co-creation. The speakers include:

  • Elle Steele, FLORYS,  Glasgow's Nature-based Accelerator
  • Jesus Iglesias, Social Climate
  • Xavier Romero, Municipality of Granollers
  • Robert Spencer, Idriss Kathrada, FIDIC

The second half of the event features a high-level panel discussion with representatives of local governments and international institutions reflecting on key challenges, opportunities and pathways to mainstream urban NbS. The following experts will be part of the panel:

  • Carolina Urrutia - Secretary of Environment, Mayor's Office, City of Bogotá:  
  • Martina Otto - Head of Cities & Secretariat, Global Alliance for Buildings & Construction, UNEP
  • Chantal van Ham - Acting Director, EU Programme Manager NbS, IUCN Europe:
  • Kit England - Green Economy Manager, Glasgow City Council:

Moderator: Tom Wild - Principal Investigator, H2020 CONEXUS, University of Sheffield

To attend the event please register at:

At the moment it is only possible to register for the entire programme of EU online events. Participants will receive instructions on how to join this specific session in due course.