Urban places are rich in biodiversity. However, in most U.S. cities, considerations for biodiversity, equitable access to nature, and climate change are not currently at the center of land use decisions nor tackled with an all-of-government approach. Moreover, the intersection of biodiversity, health, equity, and climate change are not yet fully understood by the City, its residents, and its stakeholders. Policy change is required to put these three interconnected considerations at the core of decision making. International cities have used various tools to achieve these goals: The City Biodiversity Index, Natural Assets Map, and Biodiversity Assessment Reports.
Among city networks, ICLEI holds a unique leadership role as the focal point for local and regional governments in the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), providing ICLEI USA members with access to a plethora of biodiversity resources, including the CitiesWithNature platform.
This cohort will introduce up to 12 ICLEI USA members to biodiversity assessment and action.