Green and blue infrastructure strategies :Nature-based solutions for cities and territories

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The "Green Infrastrucure Initiative" presents the International Conference

"Green and blue infrastructure matters ! : Nature-based solutions for cities and territories"

10, 11 & 12 July 2017

Main Venue : Panteion University, 136, Syggrou Ave., Athens

Under the aegis of the Ministry of Economy, Development and Tourism and the Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Insular Policy   

Click here to check the sponsorship opportunities   

Nowadays, cities and territories have to adapt to Green Infrastructure (GI), considered by the EC as a real European "Success Story". Nature-based solutions are often cheaper, more resilient and more effective in the long term, they can create jobs and economic growth. In addition, green infrastructure is now being recognized for its value as a means for adapting to the emerging and irreversible impacts of climate change. Consequently, some local governments have adopted green infrastructure as a hedge against climate change risks, particularly if the strategies result in multiple other benefits. For all these reasons, on the occasion of its 10th years anniversary, SDMed has launched “THE GREEN INFRASTRUCTURE INITIATIVE green infrastructure matters”, for the period 2015-2017. On the other hand, the Report "The state of European City 2016" makes reference to the relevant progresses made by cities : "in the past, policies to reduce floods and other natural hazards relied mostly on grey infrastructure, such as flood- protection barriers and water run-off basins. Increasingly,  natural wetlands, networks of city parks, green roofs and other nature-based solutions are used to reduce risk, while improving the quality of life in cities."

Following the HABITAT III in Quito, Ecuador, and in order to include outcomes about nature-based solutions in cities and territories, from both this major event (New Urban Agenda) and the "Urban Agenda" of the EU, SDMed envisages to organise an international and mostly european "Green&Blue Infrastructure event" to be held in May 2017, in Athens. Green infrastructure, ecosystem services and conservation of biodiversity in the city and in the rural, marine and insular space as well are the key themes to be discussed. This International Conference, entitled "Green and blue infrastructue matters ! : Nature-based solutions for cities and territorieshas been placed under the aegis of the Greek Ministries of Economy, Development and Tourism and of Maritime Affairs and Insular Policy and will be held in Athens, 10, 11 & 12 July 2017 

Day 1 - 10.07.2017 : Green infrastructure as a tool for boosting growth, sustainable, resilient, frugal and inclusive cities 

Nowadays, cities and territories have to adapt to Green Infrastructure (GI), considered by the EC as a real European "Success Story". Nature-based solutions are often cheaper, more resilient and more effective in the long term, they can create jobs and economic growth. In addition, green infrastructure is now being recognized for its value as a means for adapting to the emerging and irreversible impacts of climate change. Consequently, some local governments have adopted green infrastructure as a hedge against climate change risks, particularly if the strategies result in multiple other benefits. 

Day 2 - 11.07.2017 : Intangible infrastructures in the city- Innovative Sound design & Green lighting for frugal, attractive and safer cities and territories  

Specifically for Lighting and Sound design, which is the central theme of the Day 2 of the conference, they are considered as a Green Infrastructure (GI) Strategy delivering ecosystem services and protecting biodiversity. 24hour cities and territories become smart and frugal making prudent use of resources and providing satisfactions to the citizens. It is about the history of future soundscapes, lightscapes & nightscapes considered in a holistic way, within the framework of green infrastructure, linking and networking natural and cultural heritage.

Day 3 - 12.05.2017 : Intangile cultural heritage, Sounds, Light, City and Societies

Day 3 will include visits to green buildings and archeological sites in Athens and Piraeus in the morning, a Session on "Intangible cultural heritage, Sound, Light, City and Society" and will close with a Round Table on a specific theme of the Conference. Sounscapes, lightscapes and nightscapes in the city will also be subject of the Day 3. Furthermore, urban innovations involving special social groups ( e.g refugees, migrants) and their interaction with space, with all its dimensions described above, will be a favorite topic of the 3rd Day. 

Useful dates

Deadline for submission of abstracts : 30  January 2017

Notification of acceptance : 28 February 2017

Submission of full papers : 30 May 2017

Registration and payment of early bird fee : up to 30 March 2017

Registration and payment of full registration fee : up to 30 May 2017

Please download below :

1. Call for papers : in .docx format and in .pdf format

2. Press release of the Conference, and in .pdf format   

 You can also be directed to the "1st announcement and call for papers" page for more information.

Organisers : 1. Main Host : SDMed Observation, Planning & Eco-Innovation 2. Co-host : Panteion University of Social and Political Sciences of Athens

PARTNERS : Center for Renewable Energy Sources and Saving , SpaceAesteticsSustainability Lab of TEI of Athens, INSULEUR  

With the support of civil society : Citizens' Inspectorate for Sustainable Developmen

UNDER THE AEGIS OF :

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About Green Infrastructure

Investing in Green Infrastructure can provide many social, economic and environmental benefits, for example water retention and flood alleviation, cooling urban heat islands, space and habitat for wildlife with access to nature for people, places for outdoor relaxation and improved health and well-being. Investing in Green Infrastructure creates jobs and business opportunities, promotes sustainable development and smart growth. However, using Green Infrastructure as the better solution compared to purely technical approaches is not widely considered yet.

Therefore, Green infrastructure will need to be integrated into the main policies, such as agriculture, forestry, nature, water, marine and fisheries, regional and cohesion policy, climate change mitigation and adaptationresearch, transport, energy, disaster prevention and land use policies. It is also important for the better implementation of spatial planning tools. Green Infrastructure can be integrated into Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) and into Strategic Environment Assessment (SEA).

Green Infrastructure is a catalyst to economic growth. It can play an important role in the European Semester process

  •  it can positively impact resource consumption by reducing energy use or by increasing available water suppl
  •  it attracts new investments or new businesses to the area
  •  it saves costs arising from negative environmental effects and brings health benefits, including through disaster prevention and mitigation (floods, droughts, forest fires, heat waves in urban areas, avalanches and landslides in rural areas,…).

Related important documents

Green Infrastructure and territorial cohesion 2011

The role of Green Infrastructure in mitigating the impacts of weather and climate change related natural hazards 

Supporting the Implementation of Green Infrastructure (2015)

Science For European Policy Special issue on Green Infrastructure (2012)

Green infrastructure implementation and efficiency in EU-27 (2012)

Integration of Nature & Biodiversity and land use data (2012)

Design, Implementation and Cost Elements of Green Infrastructure Projects (2011)

The assessment of the potential of ecosystem-based approaches to climate change adaptation and mitigation in Europe (2011)

Towards a Green Infrastructure for Europe: Integration of Nature 2000 into the wider countryside (2010)

                                       

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James Biber, Biber Architects, EXPO Milano 2015, USA Pavilion