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

The ICLEI Cities Biodiversity Center leads our Local & Subnational Advocacy for Nature, serving as the voice for local governments to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity.

ICLEI USA Nature-Based Projects


2021 SDGs Cities Challenge

8 CITIES AND COUNTIES SELECTED FOR UN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOALS (SDG) ‘CHALLENGE’  July 14, 2021 [New York, USA]. Eight Local Governments (cities and counties) from

Read More »

More Projects

  • 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


Sustainability Planning Cohort

This capacity-building cohort provides structured technical assistance to guide local governments through the steps necessary to develop a Sustainability Plan.  A sustainability plan addresses social,

Read More »

ICLEI USA Natured-Based Resources

More Resources

Nature-Based Testimonials

"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."

Ron Nirenberg
Mayor of San Antonio, TX

“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.”

Marc Elrich
County Executive, Montgomery County, MD