9 Aprile 2018
We are facing a broad range of challenges, such as unsustainable urbanization and related human health issues, degradation and loss of natural capital and the ecosystem services it provides (clean air, water and soil), climate change and an alarming increase of natural disaster risks. Currently over 70% of Europe’s population live in cities, expected to increase to over 80% by the middle of the century. This translates to 36 million new urban citizens, who will need housing, employment and care by 2050.
There is growing recognition and awareness that nature can help provide viable solutions that use and deploy the properties of natural ecosystems and the services that they provide in a smart, ‘engineered’ way. These nature-based solutions provide sustainable, cost-effective, multi-purpose and flexible alternatives for various objectives. Working with nature, rather than against it, can further pave the way towards a more resource efficient, competitive and greener economy. It can also help to create new jobs and economic growth, through the manufacture and delivery of new products and services, which enhance the natural capital rather than deplete it.