Using Nature-based Solutions in Land & Freshwater Ecosystems

Using Nature-based Solutions in Land and Freshwater Ecosystems

As consultants in the environmental sector, Ecostack Innovations provides policy and innovation support for the uptake of nature-based solutions (NbS). In this article, we would like to show some examples of existing NbS from wetlands and terrestrial ecosystems to share positive experiences and provide opportunities for further uptake. For each of the identified case-studies, we provide a link from where further details can be obtained.

This article builds on a previous article defining NbS in more detail.

Smart Canals and Local Nature Reserves for North Glasgow

Glasgow City Council and Scottish Canals, with the support of the Government’s Greens Green Infrastructure Strategic Intervention, want to implement two key strategies to support the green infrastructure expansion plan. This is important to improve the quality of life of the citizens by increasing the accessibility, quantity and the quality of the green infrastructure in the country. In the project, a smart canal will be created which includes a path with a boardwalk network, mountain bike trail, disabled access fishing pegs, re-designed gateway entrances, viewpoint and a pedestrian bridge and this area will cover 10 ha. It will provide a sustainable rainwater management of vacant lots. In the case of extreme rainfall the canal automatically will provide stormwater storage by combining blue-green infrastructure. Blue-green infrastructure refers to an urban planning approach in which the infrastructure allows the whole water cycle to occur within the city.

This design can be naturalistic or completely artificial. ‘Rain garden”, “bioswales”, water reservoirs, restored rivers, urban trees, small urban parks, green roofs and green walls belong to the blue-green infrastructure.

This project serves as an example on how we can tackle climate change issues in urban areas by adapting nature-based solutions through handling surface water and flood risk. The smart canal will retain water during normal weather conditions which contributes in urban cooling, improves the biodiversity by generating new and varied habitats and these interventions will also help to regulate water quality by avoiding combined sewer overflows into watercourses during heavy storms.

Source: Panorama Solutions for a Health Planet

Living Melbourne: Our metropolitan urban forest - a groundbreaking strategy for a greener and more liveable city

Actions taken to protect the wildlife can provide green spaces for recreation and also offer an opportunity to increase resilience to climate change. The Nature Conservancy and Resilient Melbourne have developed an urban forest plan that describes the opportunities to maintain and restore natural areas in Melbourne. The Living Melbourne project was created to build a greener and more liveable city in the future. The goal of this project is to protect and restore species’ habitat and improve connectivity in between the areas by the scaling up of the green areas in private lots. Collaboration across the sectors and regions is essential for any NBS project because that is how we can achieve sustainable results in the long term. For the strategy a toolkit for resources is needed and it needs a fund for the protection and enhancement of the urban forest. This project is directional and not directive and works towards removing barriers and enhancing the opportunities that can be implemented to significantly improve the conditions for urban greening.

Source: Panorama Solutions for a Health Planet