To reverse nature loss and deal with the impacts of climate change experts have recommended a number of steps including ecosystem restoration, sustainable management of forests and planet-compatible urban utilities.
During a webinar on the recent publication of the Global Commission on BiodiverCities by 2030, a project aimed at enhancing civil society participation towards building green cities, experts said cities have a vital role to play in reversing impacts of climate change.
Productive and regenerative agriculture, transparent and sustainable supply chains, nature-positive mineral and metals extraction, nature-positive energy transition and nature-positive environment design were among other recommendations environment experts made during the webinar organised by the Society of Experts on Environment Development (SEED).
Md Abul Kalam Azad, special envoy, CVF & Commissioner, Global Commission on BiodiverCities presented the key note article in the webinar arranged on the BiodiverCities report, jointly led by the World Economic Forum and the Alexander von Humboldt Biological Resources Research Institute, and championed by the Relationship with Nature Government of Colombia.
"The BiodiverCities by 2030 report reveals that through nature-positive investments more than 59 million jobs will be created in cities by 2030 and it will create a value worth $1.5 trillion. With a focus on nature total investment is estimated to be $583 billion, one-third of the estimated value," said Azad.
Dr Qazi Kholiquzzaman Ahmad, chairman, PKSF & chief advisor, SEED said in his welcome speech, "Climate change and biodiversity are connected. Conditions of cities are bad globally and unfortunately we are at the top of the list. Highest pollution is recorded in our city. Everyone must come forward to build a nature-friendly city in the future."
Haseeb Irfanullah, independent consultant at the Environment, Climate Change and Research System said, "Nature-based solutions are nothing new. All we need is to properly implement the solutions we already have ready."
Syeda Rizwana Hasan, chief executive, BELA said, "Basically we do not have any vision about our cities. Unless we are careful and take precautions we are set to face a catastrophic disaster."
Dhaka North Mayor Atiqul Islam, in his speech as the chief guest said, "The whole city is suffering from pollution and occupation."
He also declared that 10% of the holding tax will be waived for infrastructures having their own rainwater harvesting system.
"The city corporation will install rainwater harvesting facilities at all places where new sidewalks will be constructed and buildings with the facility will enjoy 10% tax exemption," he said.
"We are inclining more towards the type of development that ignores our environment, although new technologies and methods are being discovered every day," the mayor added.
He regretted that the notion of tree plantation competition among neighbours is no longer found in the city.