The IUCN Urban Alliance, a broad coalition of IUCN constituents concerned with the urban dimensions of nature conservation, has unveiled a new knowledge product for measuring the ecological performance of cities: the IUCN Urban Nature Indexes (UNI). Comprising six themes with five indicator topics nested within each theme, the UNI is intended to help policymakers, stakeholders and local communities understand their impacts on nature, set science-based targets for improvement, and monitor progress using science-based measures.
“Banco San Miguel y Bahía de Asunción” Ecological Reserve is the city’s largest green area. Spreading over 300 hectares, this unique ecosystem is recognized worldwide as a conservation site for shore and migratory birds. However, the reserve is home to numerous families living in vulnerable conditions. Waste management has become a social and environmental challenge in the area, but the community is working with the Asunción Green City project to reduce irregular dumpsites and restore the reserve.
This report presents an ecosystem assessment covering the total land area of the EU as well as the EU marine regions. The assessment is carried out by Joint Research Centre, European Environment Agency, DG Environment, and the European Topic Centres on Biological Diversity and on Urban, Land and Soil Systems.This report constitutes a knowledge base which can support the evaluation of the 2020 biodiversity targets.
Africa is urbanizing late but fast. This brings many benefits but, as this report shows: thus far, urbanization in Africa, unique in a number of respects, is having deleterious and largely unchecked impacts on the natural environment; the degradation of natural assets and ecosystems within African cities carries tangible economic, fiscal and social costs; there are important opportunities to change the current environmental trajectory of African cities so that they move towards a more harmonious relationship between their natural and built environments.
One important way for urban leaders to rise to today’s challenges is to bring biodiversity and nature into urban design through urban ecological planning. Such planning recognizes that cities depend on biodiversity and that biodiversity depends on cities. Ecological planning not only illuminates the linkages between urbanization and biodiversity, but also helps integrate this understanding into urban planning, strategy, and investment.