The UN Climate Change Conference COP 25 was held in Madrid (Spain) from the 2nd to the 13th of December 2019 under the Presidency of the Government of Chile. The conference was a major opportunity for stakeholders to meet and take stock of current and future initiatives to fight climate change. No wonder that a project such as URBAN GreenUP was selected as one of the “Actors for Climate” in the framework of the Sectorial Climate Action and Innovation & Science Forum at the Green Zone on the 7th of December. And this is not the whole story, as on the 3rd of December the URBAN GreenUP partner Bocconi University co-organised the side event “Nature-based solutions & Global Climate Action: strengthening synergies beyond 2020”.
During the event on the 7th, which also saw the participation of the My Building is Green project, URBAN GreenUP was represented by Raúl Sánchez (project coordinator), Silvia Gómez, Jose María Sanz and Esther San José from the CARTIF Technology Centre. The team gave an overview of URBAN GreenUP, focusing on the innovative aspects of the project renaturing methodology and on expected impacts such as new opportunities and products, green jobs and environmental awareness.
The wide range of URBAN GreenUP Nature-Based Solutions (NBS) to be implemented in the Front-runner cities of Valladolid (Spain), Liverpool (UK) and Izmir (Turkey) was presented, as well as the monitoring programme carried out to quantitatively assess the NBS-generated impacts. The CARTIF Team also promoted the NBS Cooperation Manifesto, an initiative launched during the First World Forum on Urban Forests in Mantua (Italy) in 2018 to support the worldwide uptake of NBS. Finally, the project Follower cities were also presented, with a special mention of the City of Medellín given its relevance in the Ibero-american context of COP25 and remarkable efforts in the achievement of a 100% sustainability through Renaturing Urban Planning.
Bocconi University organised the side event on the 3rd of December in collaboration with the York University, the German Development Institute, the Societade Pesquisa em Vida Selvage and the Boticário Foundation. The list of speakers included Idil Boran (York University), Sander Chan (German Development Institute), Niclas Svenningsen (UNFCCC Secretariat), Chantal Robichaud (UNCBD Secretariat), Edoardo Croci (GREEN Bocconi University) and Miriam Garcia (University of São).
The event highlighted synergies across non-state, local, and regional actors and between the UNFCCC and Convention on Biological Diversity (UNCBD) in implementing policies and action to enhance the impacts of biodiversity and NBS at different levels. Panelists shared best practices in nature-based climate actions in several countries and at different scales and discussed opportunities to strengthen them within the UNFCCC.
In particular, Edoardo Croci highlighted the importance of NBS at the urban level in fighting climate change and in improving health and well-being in cities. He also underscored the hidden value generated by NBS showing the results of URBAN GreenUP project and on the economic instruments that cities can adopt to capture them.
Watch here an interview with our partner Edoardo Croci (GREEN Bocconi University) by Connect4Climate about URBAN GreenUP and its achievements.