Best prac­tice: Hanover

Element - - BUSINESS -

Han­nover was named as the Ger­man Cap­i­tal of Bio­di­ver­sity in a project led by Ger­man NGO Deutsche Umwelthilfe and funded by the Euro­pean Com­mu­nity in 2011, and au­thor­i­ties there have made bio­di­ver­sity a ba­sic goal in the cur­rent ur­ban devel­op­ment process. The re­sult is an ex­tra­or­di­nary num­ber of ac­tion plans: rivers are re­con­structed and main­tained in a nat­u­ral way, the mu­nic­i­pal for­est is cer­ti­fied as sus­tain­ably man­aged by the For­est Ste­ward­ship Coun­cil and a sep­a­rate pro­gramme even en­hances the dead­wood in the for­est for use as nat­u­ral habi­tat for in­sects. Ar­eas of city parks have been set aside to grow wild. There are also schemes to cre­ate ponds and small woods, pro­tect wild farm herbs, in­crease or­ganic farm­ing and re­ac­ti­vate rare plant species in 118 sites around the city. The au­thor­i­ties are also ex­pound­ing the virtues of all this to the pub­lic with new ed­u­ca­tional pro­grammes and fa­cil­i­ties, in­clud­ing a 32-me­tre wooden in­ter­ac­tive ‘For­est Ex­pe­ri­ence Tower opened in 2009.

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