Climate Experts Urge Government to Turn City Roofs into Wildlife Havens

Harnessing nature to protect homes from floods, droughts and heat waves saves money, claims reports

Their report also calls on ministers to support the planting of trees in cities and to set targets to provide buildings with green roofs.

The researchers want all four UK governments to “unleash the power of nature” to protect homes and farmland from floods, droughts and heatwaves caused by the climate crisis. They say using the power of nature for the changes will save taxpayers money in the long run.

Last month, more than 200 scientists issued a “code red to humanity” for the UN, warn that such emergencies will become more frequent, but the said catastrophe can be avoided if world leaders act quickly.

The new report, Nature-based Solutions in UK Climate Adaptation Policy, commissioned by the RSPB and WWF, points out that governments need to act much faster on the basis of expert advice on using nature to help society adapt. adapt to the effects of climate change.

This report is published by the European Federation of Green Roof and Green Wall Associations (EFB) and Livingroofs.org on behalf of the Greater London AuthorityEarlier this year, the government unveiled a plan to plant 44,000 large trees in towns and cities, as part of its ambition to reach at least 12 percent of England covered by forest, up from 10 percent now. But the researchers say much more funding and support is needed to advance a nature-first approach to flood management, also calling for measures such as re-meandering artificially straightened rivers, restoring peatlands and planting trees in cities and on farms.

The RSPB says green walls and roofs, with wildflowers and insect-friendly features such as old tree trunks, have blossomed in London’s boroughs after becoming part of local planning policy.

Flat green roofs with a thick bottom layer cool buildings by as much as 12C in the summer, a 2019 report found, and insulate them in winter, reducing flood risks by absorbing water and filtering air. This report was written by Gary Grant and Dusty Gedge by The Green Infrastructure Consultancy Ltd (GIC).

South-facing green walls can be up to 32C cooler than others, Spanish research shows, saving 59 percent energy and providing soundproofing. In seas and rivers, restoring kelp forests and seagrass meadows would help otters and seahorses and reduce the height and strength of waves, preventing flooding along the coast, the report authors said.

A spokesperson for the Department for Environment said the Environmental Act would give developers more incentives to include green roofs, walls, trees and other green infrastructure in their development plans, adding: “Our Environmental Act will deliver the most ambitious environmental program of any industry. land on Earth and drive action to protect nature and improve biodiversity, supported by a legally binding target to halt species decline in England by 2030.

Read more: Climate experts urge government to turn urban rooftops into wildlife havens and plant urban trees

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