Close this search box.

U.S. Cities to Take Action for Nature Unlike Ever Before With Free Biodiversity Bootcamp

Communities will learn to finance nature-based solutions, integrate biodiversity within climate and sustainability action plans, and advocate through UN channels

To prioritize nature-based solutions during the “Super Year for Nature” — a year when the global community is calling for nature to have its “Paris Agreement” moment —  ICLEI USA is hosting a six-part “Biodiversity Bootcamp” learning-and-leadership virtual training series open to all U.S. communities (non-ICLEI members welcome).

Running each Monday from July 18 until August 22, 2022, the Bootcamp offers a sequential program to U.S. cities, counties, and communities that will include technical training as well as inspiring messages from local-leader guest speakers taking action for nature. 

Learn how to Assess, Plan, and Finance Nature-based Solutions

Participants will learn accepted frameworks for community-level action for nature, how to finance nature-based solutions, ways to engage in global advocacy on biodiversity, and more.

The Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument in Honolulu County, HI, is home to Hawaiian dascyllus, banded angelfish, and other biodiversity within the coral reefs. Photo by: John Burns of NOAA via Flickr.

Session one, “Commit & Mobilize: Introduction to Global Frameworks for Action for Nature,” focuses on introducing global frameworks and advocacy at the federal, state, and local levels, as well outlining bootcamp objectives and initiating peer to peer connections with inspiring words from leaders in local-level nature action. Additionally, it will provide a demonstration of the CitiesWithNature platform’s Nature and Action Pathways. 

Session two, “Metrics and Indicators for Biodiversity Success,” will outline the City Biodiversity Index (Singapore Index), establish baselines for action in support of nature, and showcase natural asset mapping. It will additionally feature the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) nature-based solutions in cities’ framework. 

Session three, “Financing for Nature-based Solutions” will converse about financing options, including crowdfunding, which enables fundraisers to collect money from a large number of people via online platforms, as well as green bonds, grant programs and making good use of U.S. Infrastructure Bill funds.

Session four, “Community-based Approaches to Nature-based Solutions,” will include planning, financing, and implementation of biodiversity solutions within local communities. 

Session five, “Collaborate: Partnerships for Nature,” will focus on community engagement and citizen science, which is “the practice of public participation and collaboration in scientific research to increase scientific knowledge,” according to National Geographic. It will further explore city-university collaborations and their role in taking action for nature. 

Session six, “Mainstreaming Nature in the Local Planning Process,” will conclude the Biodiversity Bootcamp series with a putting-it-all-together workshop, which will include reviewing success indicators of nature-based solutions, as well as aiming to implement a natural assess report map, and determining threats to current management.

Overall, this Biodiversity Bootcamp will allow U.S. local governments to engage with the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) proceedings unlike ever before. Although the U.S. government has never ratified the CBD, this Bootcamp will provide cities with the knowledge and skills necessary to continue to implement the CBD’s goals of promoting the conservation, sustainable use, and fair and equitable sharing of biodiversity within their communities.

ICLEI plays an international role in advocacy for biodiversity 

Council member of Maui County, HI, Kelly Takaya King engages with nature-based international advocacy—featured in the Biodiversity Bootcamp—as she signs the Edinburgh Declaration for Nature.

Additionally, ICLEI USA’s Biodiversity Bootcamp serves as a lead-up to the Fifteenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 15) to the CBD, which will take place from December 5-17, 2022, in Montreal, Canada, to highlight the importance of addressing the global biodiversity crisis and establish nature-protection goals, targets, and eventually policies. 

ICLEI USA Program Officer Calyn Hart, who leads ICLEI USA’s Nature-based Pathway, designed the Bootcamp to help communities better learn about and implement nature-based solutions.

“As a precursor to COP 15, ICLEI USA’s Biodiversity Bootcamp will provide knowledge and resources for cities regarding action they can take in their communities to promote nature-based solutions. It is an engaging, relevant learning series that will help participants get involved in nature advocacy and biodiversity conservation at local and global levels,” Hart said.

The United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) highlights that to combat the current nature crisis in which one million species face extinction and the planet is losing species 1,000 times faster than ever before, communities must implement nature-based solutions to address climate change, save the planet, and promote the well-being of all non-living and living biodiversity.

As the first and largest global network of local governments devoted to solving the world’s most intractable sustainability challenges, ICLEI is involved in COP 15 as the focal point for the Local Governments and Municipal Authorities Constituency (LGMA) to the United Nations. The LGMA serves as the voice of regions and cities in climate negotiation processes.

Governor Khaled Fouda of South Sinai addresses sub-national and local leaders at the opening event of the CBD COP 14. Photo credit: ICLEI USA via Flickr.

ICLEI is involved in COP 15 to advocate for local governments’ roles in biodiversity conservation to the world and the UN. ICLEI will also develop comments on nature-based outcomes and text, and it will help define cities’ work in nature-based solutions and aim to shape the global biodiversity framework. 

Join the free Bootcamp to advocate and apply best practices of biodiversity conservation

By hosting this Biodiversity Bootcamp, ICLEI USA is extending its Access, Act, and Accelerate approach through its Nature-Based Pathway. It also prioritizes biodiversity preservation at the forefront of global issues and opens a door for U.S. communities to contribute to the UN nature processes.

ICLEI’s three-tiered approach to the Nature-Based Pathway strives to support community members, enhance biodiversity, protect local ecosystems and economies, and build community resilience.

Want to take action for nature and spearhead nature-based solutions in your community? Register for ICLEI USA’s Biodiversity Bootcamp here and be at the forefront of addressing and remediating the global biodiversity crisis.