What are ‘Nature-based solutions’?

Article on Nature-based solutions (NbS)

The Belgian Biodiversity Platform participated in the elaboration of a Wikipedia article defining 'Nature-based solutions' (more commonly known as 'NbS'):

"Nature-based solutions generally refer to the sustainable management and use of nature for tackling societal challenges such as climate change, water security, food security, human health, and disaster risk management.

For instance, the protection of mangroves in coastal areas can limit risks of coastal erosion associated to extreme weather conditions, while providing nurseries for fish production to feed local people and sequenstering CO2.

Similarly greening roofs or walls can be used to cool down city areas during summer, to capture storm water, to abate pollution, and to increase human well-being while enhancing biodiversity and connecting the city with the wider ecosystem.

With NbS, healthy, resilient and diverse ecosystems (either ‘natural’, managed or newly created) are viewed as providing solutions for the benefit of our societies and overall biodiversity, in the face of global change. The term NbS was put forward by practitioners in the late 2000s (in particular the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and the World Bank) and quickly thereafter by policymakers in Europe (most notably the European Commission). While the term itself is still being framed, case studies from around the world exemplify its potential, as well as the added-value with respect to existing terms and concepts and in complementing traditional conservation approaches. As a consequence, NbS are on their way to being mainstreamed in national and international policies and programmes (e.g. climate change policy, law, infrastructure investment and financing mechanisms)." 

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