Cities in Mind
Cities in Mind
Episode 09- When Nature is the Solution: Cities in Green & Blue

Episode 09- When Nature is the Solution: Cities in Green & Blue

Nature-based solutions to tackle climate change are taking centre stage. What can urban planners and decision-makers do to support them?
Mangrove forest in Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve Singapore, with Malaysia in the background. Credits: Danny Ye, Shutterstock

In this episode, we’ll discuss the potential of nature-based solutions in cities to adapt to climate change, reduce disaster risk, benefit the environment and improve community living.

🌊 In many Asian coastal cities, mangroves, coral reefs, wetlands, forests can play an important role in helping urban areas withstand the impacts of climate change, sea-level rise, floods or typhoons. Yet, they are facing a high risk of degradation, as a result of rapid urbanisation.

🌱 Nature-based solutions are defined by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) as “actions to protect, sustainably manage, and restore natural or modified ecosystems, that address societal challenges effectively and adaptively, simultaneously providing human well-being and biodiversity benefits”.

In order to learn more about nature-based solutions in cities, I sat down with Dr Perrine Hamel, Assistant Professor at the Nanyang Technological University (NTU) in Singapore and Head of the Resilient and Inclusive Cities Lab.

Perrine has a wealth of experience researching the potential of water sensitive cities and looking at green and blue infrastructures to respond to environmental and social challenges, such as flooding, urban heat island, or mental and physical health issues.

In the episode, we explore the importance of natural infrastructure in Asian urban areas and discuss how nature-based solutions can help cities be more resilient in a time of growing climate extremes.

We also mention the necessary combination of green and grey infrastructure, alignments with inclusive planning and policies, and the last obstacles in mainstreaming natural infrastructure information for integrated urban planning.

People crossing a flooded road in Jakarta, Indonesia, 2020. Credits: HariPhoto, Shutterstock

📝 Some resources I have used to prepare for this episode:

That’s it for today. As usual, a small 🧡 at the bottom of the article goes a long way !

Thanks for your support and see you next week for a new post. Stay tuned.

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Cities in Mind
Cities in Mind
Cities in Mind is your go-to destination to learn about cities, technology, innovation and the people behind them. All that through an Asian perspective. My name is Fabien and I am an urbanist who has been living in Singapore since 2015. Welcome!