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Urban EcologyPatterns, Processes, and Applications$
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Jari Niemelä, Jürgen H. Breuste, Thomas Elmqvist, Glenn Guntenspergen, Philip James, and Nancy E. McIntyre

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199563562

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199563562.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 23 October 2021

Building Urban Biodiversity through Financial Incentives, Regulation, and Targets

Building Urban Biodiversity through Financial Incentives, Regulation, and Targets

(p.309) Chapter 5.6 Building Urban Biodiversity through Financial Incentives, Regulation, and Targets
Urban Ecology

John Box

Oxford University Press

Biodiversity is a necessity for humans living and working in urban areas. People derive real benefits from contact with nature in terms of physical and mental health and well-being. There are economic benefits from the services provided by ecosystems and habitats — for example, flood regulation, noise reduction, and air quality improvements. Urban design and planning need to take full account of the economic benefits of the ecosystem approach which recognises the ecosystem services provided by the natural capital that is present both within urban areas and in their vicinity (for example, rural catchment areas for urban water supplies). This can only occur through changes in human values and behaviour whether as individuals, or organisations or businesses. Drivers for such changes include: economic benefits and financial incentives directly affecting businesses and people; legislation, regulation, and official guidance; and using targets to encourage the pioneering individuals and organisations by providing evidence of tangible achievements in changing behaviour and overcoming cultural norms. Vibrant, innovative national programmes are required to promote the benefits of urban biodiversity with the health, enjoyment, and well-being at their core. Retaining biodiversity in urban areas, let alone increasing biodiversity in towns and cities, will require real changes in human behaviour that need to be driven by economics and financial incentives in combination with legislation, regulation and targets.

Keywords:   biodiversity, economic benefits, ecosystem approach, ecosystem services, financial incentives, health, natural capital, planning, urban design, well-being

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