Green Infrastructure and Nature-Based Solutions in the Urban and Rural Context
A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050).
Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 March 2019) | Viewed by 28136
Interests: interdisciplinary research; ecological engineering; water and waste management; environmental assessment and impact mitigation; responsible use of resources
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Nature can make important contributions to climate protection and adaptation to climate change, through "nature-based solutions" (NbS) as part of Green Infrastructure (GI). GI is defined as a strategically-planned network of high quality (semi-)natural areas, which are designed and managed to deliver a wide range of ecosystem services and to protect biodiversity in both rural and urban settings. Examples of NbS to climate protection and adaptation to climate change include the conservation of peatlands and species-rich permanent grassland as important CO2 storage, the renaturation of floodplains as retention areas to mitigate flood peaks, and the use of urban green to dampen urban heavy rainfall episodes. Further, NbS can contribute to land recycling and soil depollution, as well as wastewater purification. In addition, these natural-based solutions also generate a wealth of additional benefits, are cost-effective and often cheaper in the long term relative to traditional measures. Therefore, nature-based solutions can be considered complementary or a comprehensive alternative to purely technical approaches. The need for multifunctional landscapes, which simultaneously provide food security, livelihood opportunities, maintenance of species and ecological functions, and fulfil cultural, aesthetic recreational needs, has been recognized for several years (O’Farrell and Anderson, 2010). Urban vegetation is an example for multifunctional landuse (Kabisch et. al. 2017). Urban nature can make cities more adaptable and resilient to climate change. At the same time, urban green spaces increase the quality of life in cities.
Ecosystem services applied in issue-specific ecosystem-related approaches are a driving force for sustainable development as well, as they find their input directly into the urban planning. The two main approaches are ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA) and ecosystem-based mitigation (EbM) (Cohen-Shacham et al. 2016). EbA was developed as a framework for addressing the role of ecosystem services in moderating climate impacts. EbM, like EbA, contributes to fulfil the objectives of United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and for this reason is often treated together with EbA as key approaches to ensure continued ecosystem functionality, human health and socio-economic security, through storage of carbon. Accordingly, the Eco-DRR (Disaster Risk Reduction) focuses mainly on minimizing the impacts of hazard events by enhancing people’s capacities to better manage and recover from the effects of hazards. This emerging approach, applied in policy as well as practice, is closely linked to EbA and EbM, focusing on particular hazard events, often within specified time periods and locations. Unlike EbA and EbM, the Eco-DRR approach also addresses hazard events that are not necessarily linked only to climate change or climate variability.
Given this, this Special Issue on “Green Infrastructure and Nature-Based Solutions in the Urban and Rural Context” fulfils a gap in the literature by summarizing the value of Green Infrastructure and nature-based solutions in an interdisciplinary context. It encourages a diverse set of submissions and we will welcome papers that refer to (but are not limited to) topics such as:
- Green infrastructure conception and design
- Cost assessment of green infrastructure and nature-based solutions
- Sustainable land management and development
- Climate mitigation and ecosystem-based adaptation and ecosystem-based mitigation
- Disaster risk reduction through green infrastructure
- Green infrastructure for land recycling and mitigation of polluted sites
- Urban gardening / urban farming
- Green multifunctional land use
- Ecosystem services of green infrastructure
- Spatial planning for green infrastructure and nature-based solutions
Cohen-Shacham, E.; Walters, G.; Janzen, C.; Maginnis, S. (Eds.) (2016). Nature-based Solutions to address global societal challenges, Gland, Switzerland: IUCN. xiii + 97pp. ISBN: 978-2-8317-1812-5, DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.CH.2016.13.en
Kabisch, N., Korn, H. Stadler, J., & Bonn, A. (2017). Nature-based Solutions to Climate change in Ur-ban Areas – Linkages of science, policy and practice. Theory and Practice of Urban Sustainability Transitions. Springer, Cham, Switzerland.https://link.springer.com/book/10.1007%2F978-3-319-56091-5
O’Farrell, P.J.; Anderson, P.M.L (2010). Sustainable multifunctional landscapes: a review to imple-mentation, Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability 2010, 2:59–65
Prof. Dr. Petra Schneider
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- Green infrastructure
- Nature-based solutions
- Ecosystem-based adaptation
- Ecosystem-based mitigation
- ecosystem services