Sustainable Urbanisation in cities

This domain will initiate and sustain dialogue among the various stakeholders (private and public sector, architects, practitioners, policy maker), on nature-based solutions in the context of sustainable urbanization in cities and human well-being. The dialogue will address the available opportunities for existing and new NBS associated with materials, buildings and infrastructure in cities. The incorporation of NBS in building and at district level will also be explored. The generation of co-benefits through greening cities in relation with climate change adaptation and mitigation will be examined as well as the role of cultural heritage in renaturing cities and how to incorporate existing knowledge from historic buildings and districts in restoration with nature. The role and effectiveness of NBS in advancing sustainable and resilient infrastructure development and upgrade will be explored together with replication strategies for renovating cities with nature. Methods for robust monitoring of the performance and assessment of the impact of deployed NBS will be examined.

Linear parks along urban rivers: Perceptions of thermal comfort and climate change adaptation in Cyprus

Submitted by Stavros Stagakis on June 20, 2018 - 10:49am

The development of green space along urban rivers could mitigate urban heat island effects, enhance the physical and mental well-being of city dwellers, and improve flood resilience. A linear park has been recently created along the ephemeral Pedieos River in the urban area of Nicosia, Cyprus. Questionnaire surveys and micrometeorological measurements were conducted to explore people's perceptions and satisfaction regarding the services of the urban park. People's main reasons to visit the park were physical activity and exercise (67%), nature (13%), and cooling (4%).

Life Cycle Assessment of wastewater treatment systems for small communities: Activated sludge, constructed wetlands and high rate algal ponds

Submitted by Stavros Stagakis on June 20, 2018 - 10:48am

The aim of this study was to assess the environmental impact of three alternatives for wastewater treatment in small communities. To this end, a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) was carried out comparing a conventional wastewater treatment plant (i.e. activated sludge system) with two nature-based technologies (i.e. hybrid constructed wetland and high rate algal pond systems). Moreover, an economic evaluation was also addressed. All systems served a population equivalent of 1500 p.e. The functional unit was 1 m3 of water.

Human-nature for climate action: Nature-based solutions for urban sustainability

Submitted by Stavros Stagakis on June 20, 2018 - 10:47am

The global climate change agenda proceeds at an incremental pace while the Earth is approaching critical tipping points in its development trajectory. Climate action at this pinnacle juncture needs to be greatly accelerated and rooted in the fundamentals of the problem-human beings' disconnection from nature. This paper underscores the valuable role nature and nature-based solutions can play in addressing climate change at the city scale and its implications for broader sustainability.

Nature based solutions to mitigate soil sealing in urban areas: Results from a 4-year study comparing permeable, porous, and impermeable pavements

Submitted by Stavros Stagakis on June 20, 2018 - 10:46am

Soil sealing is one of the most pervasive forms of soil degradation that follows urbanization and, despite innovative pavements (i.e. pervious) are being installed in urban areas to mitigate it, there is little research on the effects of pervious pavements on soil water and carbon cycle and on the physiology of urban trees. The aim of this 4-year experiment was to assess the effects of three pavements, differing in permeability to water and gases, on some soil physical parameters, and on growth and physiology of newly planted Celtis australis and Fraxinus ornus.

Nature-based solutions for urban landscapes under post-industrialization and globalization: Barcelona versus Shanghai

Submitted by Stavros Stagakis on June 20, 2018 - 10:44am

Using Barcelona and Shanghai as case studies, we examined the nature-based solutions (NBS) in urban settings—specifically within cities experiencing post-industrialization and globalization. Our specific research questions are: (1) What are the spatiotemporal changes in urban built-up land and green space in Barcelona and Shanghai? (2) What are the relationships between economic development, exemplified by post-industrialization, globalization, and urban green space?

Nature-Based Solutions in the EU: Innovating with nature to address social, economic and environmental challenges

Submitted by Stavros Stagakis on June 20, 2018 - 10:44am

Contemporary societies are facing a broad range of challenges, from pressures on human health and well-being to natural capital depletion, and the security of food, water and energy. These challenges are deeply intertwined with global processes, such as climate change and with local events such as natural disasters. The EU's research & innovation (R&I) policy is now seeking to address these challenges from a new perspective, with Nature-Based Solutions, and turn them into innovation opportunities that optimise the synergies between nature, society and the economy.

Green infrastructure for urban climate adaptation: How do residents’ views on climate impacts and green infrastructure shape adaptation preferences?

Submitted by Stavros Stagakis on June 20, 2018 - 10:42am

Cities are particularly prone to the effects of climate change. One way for cities to adapt is by enhancing their green infrastructure (GI) to mitigate the impacts of heat waves and flooding. While alternative GI design options exist, there are many unknowns regarding public support for the various options.

Challenges for tree officers to enhance the provision of regulating ecosystem services from urban forests

Submitted by Stavros Stagakis on June 20, 2018 - 10:40am

Urbanisation and a changing climate are leading to more frequent and severe flood, heat and air pollution episodes in Britain's cities. Interest in nature-based solutions to these urban problems is growing, with urban forests potentially able to provide a range of regulating ecosystem services such as stormwater attenuation, heat amelioration and air purification.

Renaturing cities using a regionally-focused biodiversity-led multifunctional benefits approach to urban green infrastructure

Submitted by Stavros Stagakis on June 20, 2018 - 10:36am

If a ‘Renaturing of Cities’ strategy is to maximise the ecosystem service provision of urban green infrastructure (UGI), then detailed consideration of a habitat services, biodiversity-led approach and multifunctionality are necessary rather than relying on the assumed benefits of UGI per se. The paper presents preliminary data from three case studies, two in England and one in Germany, that explore how multifunctionality can be achieved, the stakeholders required, the usefulness of an experimental approach for demonstrating transformation, and how this can be fed back into policy.

Do green spaces affect the spatiotemporal changes of PM2.5 in Nanjing?

Submitted by Stavros Stagakis on June 20, 2018 - 9:52am

Introduction: Among the most dangerous pollutants is PM2.5, which can directly pass through human lungs and move into the blood system. The use of nature-based solutions, such as increased vegetation cover in an urban landscape, is one of the possible solutions for reducing PM2.5 concentration. Our study objective was to understand the importance of green spaces in pollution reduction.