Creating cities that live in harmony with nature
Today, over half the world’s population lives in cities. This share is expected to rise to 68%, or nearly 7 billion people, by 2050. Material consumption is expected to grow on a business-as-usual pathway, with buildings already accounting for 30% of global energy consumption and 28% of energy-related carbon emissions. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought into sharp focus the unsustainability of current urbanization models for human and planetary health. However, cities also fuel the global economy and are, therefore, crucial to the economic and social recovery from COVID-19.
As societies emerge from this crisis, increasing urban resilience and improving the lives and well-being of dwellers will be critical to boosting economic and citizen confidence. According to the World Economic Forum’s Future of Nature and Business Report, a nature-positive pathway in the infrastructure and built environment could create over $3 trillion in business opportunities and create 117 million jobs by 2030.
BiodiverCities by 2030 is a multistakeholder initiative that supports city governments, businesses and citizens to reimagine urban development with nature and people at its core. Its vision is to create nature-positive and climate resilient cities, where every urban activity leaves the Earth enriched and not depleted, by 2030.
44% of global GDP in cities ($31 trillion) is estimated to be at risk of disruption from nature loss, and more than 1.4 billion people living in the world’s largest urban centres are threatened by natural hazards. With cities projected to host three quarters of the world’s population by 2050, urban leaders and decision-makers must prioritize nature in their investment decisions to both improve the resilience and liveability of their cities, and to secure a sustainable future for humanity.