The Nature-Based Pathway
Bring nature to your doorsteps.
Protect the ecosystems that underpin local economies and the resilience of our communities.
Nature's Key Role
By enhancing biodiversity, ICLEI members safeguard life-supporting resources and support the well-being of their community members, both human and non-human.
Our Approach to Nature-Based Development
Understand Your Natural Assets
Local governments establish a baseline for biodiversity action using a number of methods, such as creating a natural assets assessment, a natural assets map, or city biodiversity index. ICLEI can help you get started.
Build Your Biodiverse Community
Local Biodiversity Strategy & Action Planning brings global processes to local relevance by aligning community biodiversity action to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity. The CitiesWIthNature platform is helping give structure to a community’s vision for developing in a way that supports, rather than diminishes, nature.
Collaborate and Lead the Movement
ICLEI USA Nature-Based Projects
Philipstown’s Sink, Store, Reduce, Offset GHG inventory was developed in partnership between resident-action group The Climate Smart Communities Task Force of Philipstown, local community empowerment nonprofit the
- Our Biodiversity Assessment & Action cohorts bring groups of communities together in a facilitated training to support nature-based planning.
- Natural Asset Maps are helping global cities in Brazil, Tanzania and India prepare for climate change and protect livelihoods.
- King County, WA worked with ICLEI to develop a baseline biodiversity assessment.
- Local Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plans have been developed in cities diverse as Johannesburg, Mexico City and Dublin to support nature-based action.
ICLEI USA Nature-Based Cohorts
Cohorts are guided group technical assistance programs that guide communities to results. Learn More.
ICLEI USA Natured-Based Resources
Sink, Store, Reduce, Offset: Lessons on Consumption-Based and Forest-Carbon GHG Inventories from Philipstown, NY
Philipstown: A Climate Smart Community will tell you about their Motivation to Act, Statewide initiatives and the NY Climate Act, along with how zoning supports
During the health crisis created by the novel coronavirus, local sustainability and resilience staff are experiencing a significant upheaval in their programming, budgets, and daily
- CitiesWIthNature is our UN-endorsed online learning and engagement platform for local governments to engage with the nature-based pathway. Free for ICLEI members and nonmembers, and supported by U.S. Pioneer communities, CitiesWithNature allows for a stepwise approach to nature-based planning.
- Subscribe to the BUZZ newsletter for city nature news.
- Learn from the Nature-Based Solutions in Cities webinar series.
- Appendix J to the U.S. Community Protocol for GHG Accounting and Reporting provides scientific method to quantify both carbon emissions and removals associated with forests and trees
- biodiverCities: A Primer on Nature in Cities
- biodiverCities: A Handbook for Municipal Biodiversity Planning and Management
"San Antonio is proud to join CitiesWithNature as a Pioneer City. Established on the banks of the San Antonio River over 300 years ago, our city continues to thrive by respecting our abundant natural resources. We know that caring for nature is essential to a sustainable future, and have prioritized biodiversity, green infrastructure and healthy ecosystems in our SA Climate Ready, Climate Action & Adaptation Plan. We celebrate this initiative and look forward to working together as stewards of our planet."
“Montgomery County jumped at the opportunity to explore the sequestration benefits associated with trees and forests. Given our aggressive GHG reduction goals of 80 percent by 2027 and carbon neutrality by 2035, increased sequestration must be in the mix of strategies we employ. The new protocol also has prompted us to think more deeply about natural climate solutions ranging from reducing the heat-island effect to increasing sequestration in the agricultural sector.”