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JD Brown of The Biophilic Cities Project discusses Biophilic Cities

JD Brown of The Biophilic Cities Project Discusses Biophilic Cities

Biophilic Cities seamlessly integrate nature into urban environments, fostering a deep connection between humans and the natural world. Through green spaces, biodiversity corridors, and architectural designs inspired by nature, these cities prioritise well-being, sustainability, and resilience. Residents enjoy improved mental and physical health, reduced stress, and increased creativity in these urban oases.

JD Brown of The Biophilic Cities Project discusses Biophilic Cities


You know, so is this the the best mechanism for limited investment of public funds, and we would argue absolutely because when you are investing in nature, you know, you have your primary benefit.

But then there's a variety of co benefits. And it's also an investment that doesn't, depreciate over time as a lot of the kind of hard structure infrastructure that we have made.


Welcome to rethink what matters. The podcast dedicated to aligning the economy and ecology with everyone for improved business performance, stronger families, and a greener cooler planet.

And today, I'm joined by JD Brown of the Biophilic Cities project, Virginia, in the USA, and we're gonna be discussing Biophilic cities.


Hello, Paul.


What I'd like to do first is if you could just explain what a biophilic city is


Sure. Yeah. So the, concept of biophilia in general talks about this innate connection that humans have with nature.

And so if we plan and design in places that we occupy on a daily basis, the more that we can connect people with nature, the better we're going to feel in terms of our health and well-being.

So, for example, it started out with the design of buildings, talking about how do we bring nature in directly and indirectly whether it's reflected in kind of the designs that we use for buildings, but also, you know, are we incorporating living organisms like plants, bringing in light into the interiors using natural daylight to bring light to the interiors.

And then from there, Tim Beatley, who works with me at Biophilic Cities, was thinking about, well, how do we expand this beyond the single building site?

How do we start to think about the places in between the buildings? How do we even design entire cities so that we can have that integrated nature in the places that we occupy on a daily basis.


And could you tell us a little bit more then about the biophilic cities project?


Sure. So Tim authored this book in twenty ten, and part of the creation of that book was a research project at the University of Virginia.

And he looked at a variety of different cities that were kind of leading examples of cities that were making efforts to integrate nature as part of a wide variety of planning and design efforts And those various cities were invited to the University of Virginia for a symposium that happened in twenty thirteen.

And over a few days of kind of sharing best practices, case studies, challenges, those cities decided to kinda informally launch a network of cities that would be continuing to share these ideas and that's ten years in the making

And so now we have about thirty cities that are meeting on a monthly basis, thinking about, you know, ways that we can kind of broaden how this approach is is happening. So whether we're thinking about biodiversity, whether we're thinking about health, whether we're thinking about sustainable economic opportunities.

All of it kind of fits within this, this interest of the cities that are trying to planning plan and design cities for integrated nature.


So Okay. So I guess there are some cities which are already quite biophilic. They've already got quite a lot of nature you know, within them, maybe they were designed that way in the first place because maybe, I don't know, the city planners or the architects had that in mind already.

So is there a variety of cities that are a part of the biophilic cities project?


Yeah. So we'd like to say that there is no one example of a biophilic city is it's going to vary depending on the climate, the ecosystem, and the culture. So there's very different ways in which people kind of interact with nature, celebrate nature, incorporate into their daily life.

So it looks very different whether you're talking about Edmonton, Alberta versus Cortina, Costa Rica. You know, there's definitely similarities and lessons share amongst those cities, but there's definitely not one single vision for a biophilic city. And the other thing to mention Paul is you know, this is not an accreditation program. So it's not a we're handing a certificate and saying congratulations.

You've accomplished goal of being a biophilic cities. Instead, it's an aspirational network. So it's cities that are at many different starting places. Some of them are The global examples that you would think of when you think of nature in cities like Singapore, San Francisco, California, Portland, Oregon, Oregon, in Texas, places like that, but it's also places that are trying to identify an, a new path for themselves forward in terms of kind of maybe having an industrial history, you know, thinking about what is the future hope for us and really going on a new path and there's some really amazing examples of cities that are doing that in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in the United States, Birmingham, England.

A lot of different places that are, you know, coming from different starting points, but I think are some of the more inspirational examples of of what you can see and what what can be accomplished if a a city really kind of gears itself and focuses on that approach.


Okay. And who the main influences influences for this, then who are the people that need to be involved in the bio affiliate cities project that can really make the biggest difference? Is that Is that city planners? Is it is it architects?


Yeah. So the folks that we participate mostly our city representatives.

So governmental representatives, and it's it's a wide range. So you know, you would think kind of parks and trail planning, maybe biodiversity and sustainability planners, but it's also, you know, folks that are working in public works, you know, the mayor's office, health, you know, pretty wide range of kind of city agencies really become involved, with these discussions when you're really kind of thinking about this lens of integrated nature and what that might mean for cities.

But part of what we do, you know, is also bringing together you know, the leading practitioners, if you will. So you mentioned architects, certainly one of them, planners, and as well as the very large NGOs both local and international in scope. All of them are part of this this really big network, that people contributing to these ideas.


Is there much research available to show that and we all know we all know this to be the case. So it is a much research to show that a greener environment is better for health and well-being.


Yeah. I think there's a ton and it's growing.

So, yeah, the library is really strong in terms of kind of integrated nature, kind of accomplish so many different things. So, you know, we think about lower anxiety, you know, the spur for better or physical health, but there's also studies out there that are saying people in presence of nature are more generous. They're more cooperative. They're creating social ties.

Just, yeah, a really wide variety. That's often the place that we start with if we're giving a presentation on Biophilic City, just talking about just this breath of of information in studies that are out there because I think that's really persuasive kind of makes the case itself.


Okay. And are you measuring like the engagement of the residents with in their city, you know, with the the green spaces, if you like.


Yeah. So there's when the city joins a network, we ask them to adopt a few different indicators and one of those is exactly that, citizen engagement.

So I think we can measure that in a couple different ways and cities do that that the network in a few different manners. One is, you know, visitation rates. So looking at kind of the the use which we obviously saw a spike during COVID nineteen, obviously leading to kind of rethinking about how we manage kind of access to some of these places.

As well as things like their ability to identify local fauna and plants So kind of the eco literacy of the local citizens, as well as support for local ecosystem based organizations. So, you know, what type of kind of membership is there locally for kind of nature based, you know, whether it's recreational or conservation based organizations within a city. Right.

I think all of those are indicators of kind of engagement.


Right. Okay. And, to what extent is the design of the architecture being affected by this project.


Yeah. So I have to say biophilic design, you know, the terminology used to just describe kind of incorporating these concepts of biophilia into the built environment really is at the leading edge There's a huge adoption of it internationally.

On our website, we're just about to kick off the database that is looking at biophilic design internationally in many different contexts. So obviously residential but also a commercial as well as, you know, hospitals, a wide variety of places where you're seeing this adoption of biophilic design, but Yes. You know, biophilic planning, thinking about how we kind of do urban planning, that's a little bit newer to the conversation for Biophilic design is is definitely a globally adopted and pursued, design strategy.


Well, I think this has always existed though, hasn't it? I think people have always been interested in, how they live and how they design cities and landscapes and buildings and how it all works together. So is this if you like giving a new name to an old an old idea?


I think, yeah, quite possibly. Yeah. So when you start thinking about, you know, the places that are emblematic, biophilic design, there's historic examples that are at the top of the list and we're seeing kind of, maybe a reinvigoration of some of those more historic architectural ideas because we find that we created places that are disconnecting us from the the local environment and that when we have that connection we feel innately better about the space. You know, it's also reflected in, you know, the value of those properties. But, yeah, absolutely.


I make I'm thinking of London -- Mhmm. -- which is, you know, really intense, and, you know, versus Paris which seems to be much more open.

And I'm also thinking of Milton Keans here. I don't know if you're familiar with Milton Keans here in the UK. It's used to be called a new city.

All very different, but all sort of reflect the time at which they were how, you know, they were created if you like how they've been created their journey, and and the thinking at the time. So I think oftentimes these cities reflect the time in which they were conceived.


Yeah. And I think they also I think you're absolutely correct. And I also think that they reflect possibly the cultural, as specs that might be different between the places too.

You know, there's definitely, you know, the the parks that are integrated throughout London definitely illustrate this kind of desire to escape and be away from this, you know, what is otherwise a very urban environment but to have that wild nature almost feel like in the city is, you know, I would think particularly English, but I I'll let you speak to that.


I was in Regents Park ton Sunday. And the flowers there are just amazing, you know.

What they do with those flowers is it's just incredible the way all the colors and the way that we've been laid out and also also immaculately done so meticulous. In preparation of the maintenance of it. And it's a big part. You know, Regents Park.

And you do notice it. You do feel it. You know, you notice the difference. It's quite calming.

It slows you down.


Yeah. Absolutely. It's certainly obviously it's a very real thing.


So what are the challenges then to create a Biophilic City often gets discussed within the project?


Yeah. So in in in terms of principal challenges, you know, there's a few. Obviously, one is financial.

So, one of the other indicators that we ask cities to consider is, you know, what's the commitment, at the government level in terms of a budgetary commitment to things specifically related to integrating nature into the urban environment.

Are there specific plans that are mentioning and using the terminology by Biophilia or similar terminology.

You know, nature based planning is another one that is certainly broadly, adopted and used in Europe. To discuss what I think are very similar ideas.

And, in terms of additional roadblocks, you know, financial being one and probably related is kind of the I guess, the literacy of local government in terms of thinking about this and valuing it as an approach for investment.

One of the challenges is the timeline, you know, the benefits that you receive from planning and designing cities that are rich in nature is a pretty long timeline not necessarily one that is the same timeline as other political processes that we have.

So, you know, building up that support in terms of not just what's happening in the community, but how that gets translated into what the laws that we are making and the plans that we are adopting. I think is really a long term approach, but I I think you see it more and more of a time.


Yeah. Well, I think we've got some new laws here by biodiversity net gain where new developments have to create ten percent more biodiversity than was there in the first place.

Which is I think great because that talks more to regeneration and sustainability.

And I'm sure there is something similar you know, in the US for biodiversity and, you know, ensuring that, anyway, new developments tell you right. Yeah. You know, making good on the damage that they do. It's not making improving it


.Not at the national level, which I I wish was the case. But, you know, certainly cities and that's part of the value of the biophilic cities network is in the United States, cities are really at the forefront in terms cutting edge of, you know, thinking about, well, how do we design kind of mechanisms to make these types of things happen? And you know, the biodiversity net gain and a variety of other mechanisms that are like that, are really of particular interest to me. My background is in law as well as planning.

So I'm I'm very interested in how we start to kind of create the incentives, how we tied into what we are doing otherwise in terms of how we manage land in the United States, to support that type of investment.


So what started your interest JD in biophilic cities?


Yeah. So I practiced law, originally after graduating, with my undergraduate degree, went to law school and worked with public interest organizations in the United states doing litigation, which, you know, there was a huge demand for it. It's really important to get a seat at the table, but it's a very adversarial type system, and that's not what I wanted to do with my career, professionally. So at that point, I actually went back to compliment my law degree with a planning degree. And it's at that point that I met Tim Beatley and was a lot of synergy in the things that I was interested in doing and what Tim beat me was pursuing with Biophillic Cities. And so we've been working together for the last decade since then.


So what is the history of biophilic cities then? Where where did it all start?


Yeah. So, it has its roots in, this biophilia hypothesis, which is a hypothesis that was developed by E.O. Wilson out of Harvard.

And he is the one that is talking about, well, human beings have this innate connection with the living environment and how do we think about creating that connection? And from there, he started to work with others on the, you know, bringing that into the built landscape in terms of architecture specifically.

So kind of thinking about, well, what are the ways that we can both bring in direct and indirect nature into the buildings that we are building And then Tim having a kind of a a history in thinking about green cities and planning for nature in cities recognizing that there's a lot more there and a lot of potential in terms of these are the places that people live and occupy on a daily basis thinking about, well, how do we take this biophilia hypothesis and really expand the scales of what we are thinking about?

So the spaces in between the buildings as well as, you know, city scale or even regionally, how do we start to kind of plan for that connectivity?


Do you find yourself looking at the more deprived areas of cities though that probably need it, you know, more than anywhere else? 


Yeah. So I think one of the the huge challenges, but also opportunities for planning for integrated nature in cities is thinking about those places that have that lack the most in terms of kind of an existing infrastructure.

There's been a lot of studies in the United States in the last few years that are really kind of connecting the dots between, you know, a history of racial injustice and planning and the fact that those are the very portions of the cities where you're seeing the least green right now. So there's a strong correlation between those two And so you are seeing cities start to think about, well, we want to invest in nature, but the places that we need to be starting with are the places that are lacking the most.

And as well, the places that are going to benefit, you know, the most in terms of their health and well-being because of their starting place in terms of these, these landscapes.

So it's a really big piece of a much larger conversation about, you know, bringing equity into cities. And what does that mean?


And to what extent do you try to get the involvement of the people who live there, the residents?


Yeah. So I think that's an absolutely the the the starting point for these conversations.

So one of the big challenges for investment in cities in nature is large scale investments, you know, from a governmental side in terms of parks and trails and landscapes invites private investment.

And those private investments can often push out the people who are living in those neighborhoods the very people who these kind of parks and amenities are designed to benefit.

And so, you know, we continue United States and globally to think about what are the strategies to not have that be the result of what are otherwise well intentioned efforts.

And so I think part of that is engagement. It has to be from the ground up. There has to be kind of this ownership of what is happening, the spaces that are designed with particular mind given to, you know, how do those existing residents use those spaces, you know, what are the amenities that they're looking for, and then giving them a continuing role in terms of kind of the maintenance and responsibility, I think, is is one strategy that I think is critical amongst many.


Right. Okay. But it's all it's always about the public spaces. It's not so much about private spaces than how people could maybe better use their own private gardens. It wouldn't reflect on that.


Well, it's both. So, so for example, you know, what we work with in Biophilic Citiess, is you know, a lot of public spaces, but it's also thinking about what are the criteria that are being adopted for new development. You know, you mentioned the the net biodiversity gain you know, that's things that you can do to influence what's happening on private landscapes in well as well. But There's also kind of large scale private landowners that are really interested in pursuing these ideas.

You know, one of the other things that I do is I work with a group called second nature. And so we act as consultants to, you know, private landowners who are interested in kind of building the ecology of urban areas and creating that connectivity. And I think they absolutely have to be part of a conversation because when we think about what does the urban landscape look like, you know, it's only a small part of it is public. So if if we're talking about bringing kind of integrated rich nature to cities, It's gotta be both the public and private landscapes that we're thinking about.


It's a great idea. I like that thinking. And to what extent are animals considered in biophilic cities?


So that's a piece of it. I think, you know, there's the the animals that everyone is interested in, you know, like birds and so cities are more and more designing kind of prescriptions for new buildings.

In terms of thinking about, you know, what's the, the type of glass that they are using? Are they creating reflective surfaces that are gonna lead to bird deaths?

You know, buildings being the second most, widely re the biggest reason why, for bird mortality, cats, domestic cats being the first, but we're talking billions of birds, annually.

So that could have a really big, impact where I think it gets more challenging is when we think about some of these these species like in the United States coyotes, or even kind of in the the areas that are more connected to to wider spaces, like bears.

So thinking about, you know, how do we create that balance where, you know, inviting rich ecosystems in urban areas, but in a way that is also conducive and comfortable with how we wanna use those landscapes. There's a measure of success perhaps on a biophilic city, the extent to which it does attract animals, baby birds, into urban areas. Yeah. So, that's definitely a criteria.

So there's something called Singapore index, which is is looking at, through a variety of different metrics, you know, how successful our cities in their biodiversity planning, and a variety of the different metrics are what's the extent in the presence of wild species in the urban landscape? You know, what's the the number of bird species that we are seeing in the variety to what extent are those native, traditionally to the area.

Yeah. So, absolutely. It's a definite metric.


Okay. And what's the resistance you might find to ideas in helping to create more biophilic city?


Yeah. So I think, in terms of resistance, there's a variety. Right? There's the financial competition for limited funds, you know, so is this the the best mechanism for limited investment of public funds, and we would argue absolutely because when you are investing in nature, you know, you have your primary benefit, but then there's a variety of co benefits, and it's also an investment that doesn't, depreciate over time.

As a lot of the kind of hard structure infrastructure that we have made. I love to give the example of Portland Oregon which had a combined sewer overflow issue, which is common in the United States because of the the time at which a lot of cities were built in the United States So in an effort to, you know, kind of separate out the sewage and the water, stormwater overflow, they had to address that in the city to bring back better water quality to their their their river there. And on one side of the river, they invested in kind of a traditional pipe project And then on the other side of the river, they did more of a dispersed, I would argue biophilic approach where they did green streets, smaller scale, type investments, The cost of that side was half of the investment cost for the big pipe project and it's a project that is built bringing all these other benefits, in terms of creating nature in the urban landscape, and you're not gonna have to replace it in fifty years.

So to me, that's just, you know, that's the type of kind of communication in terms of investment that hopefully, managers of cities and decision makers can kind of begin to understand and have part of their library.


Right. That's a great example. And do you have any other case studies you could share with us where, you know, we've seen that you've seen a positive impact of a Biophilic City.


Yeah. I mean, I think the numbers can get pretty, you know, mind blowing. So for example, Philadelphia, had a similar issue in terms of water quality in the city, but it also had a need for creation of new park space So it combined the two. So it met its need for new park space by building these new parks with huge retention areas beneath that to capture the stormwater, treat it before it gets into the river. So improved water quality as well as all this new green infrastructure, that serves recreational and all sorts of other benefits obviously brings value to the neighborhoods that they're located in. New tax revenue.

And the numbers that they talk about are in, like, the billions.

For the lifetime of these programs, you know, which is they're looking out like thirty and fifty years, but still. I mean, it's just, it's staggering.


And does it create employment? So if you're creating a biophilic city, maybe there are more people involved in maintenance and taking care of the city.


Yeah. So I think that's an important strategy. So we talk about kind of engaging, existing communities in these new spaces and I think absolutely one of them is is green infrastructure type skills. So you see in a variety of cities in the United States kind of job creation programs that are looking to develop skills for managing and developing green infrastructure as a a new mechanism for creating new economic opportunity.

The city of Austin, for example, had which it developed during COVID kind of this public public relief, effort, which was really this green core of kinda new, you know, job seeking individuals who are interested in gaining these skills. And then, you know, you're developing the skills that feed into kind of the type of landscapes that we wanna see. So having those opportunities, I think, and skill of labor that that can do that. Go hand in hand.


And to what extent is climate change driving the biophilic agenda?

I mean, climate change obviously impacts everything.

So we at at Biophilic cities have kind of what we call a grand challenge is we don't identify climate change as one of those grand challenges in part because it feeds literally into every other grand challenge where you're talking about health and well-being, resilience, planning for equity.

So, yes, certainly in terms of, sea level rise, the opportunity to use green infrastructure and invest in kind of long term solutions that will adapt to changing conditions in the US, the, you know, the emphasis on kind of the heat island effect in rising urban temperatures has been you know, at the forefront of what we were talking about in terms of urban planning.

And within the last few years, we see across the urban landscape even at the very micro level. So on one side of the street versus on the other side, the dramatic differences in temperature because of the tree canopies that exist So thinking about just the tremendous value that those tree canopies bring and then, you know, being more intentional in what you are allowing to happen in terms of the development of the landscapes in the US is an absolutely critical response to climate adaptation, as one example.


That's a great example. And, we've recorded, I've already recorded, two podcasts on green roofs, living walls, and rain gardens. Mhmm. If that fits very well with Biophilic Cities.


Yeah. I think it's all part of the same conversation.

You know, what approach a city is going to use probably depends a lot on you know, the density and kind of the potential for its adoption. So I think green roofs are in excellent intervention in dense areas. Right? Right. Because you're gonna see, you know, where there's already a demand for property values, asking for that type of additional investment, I think makes a lot of sense, where you're trying to attract invest man, because you have vacant lots and the like, I think probably more of a ground level approach makes a lot more sense.

You know, how do you repurpose these areas that you're not not being not utilizing, like the vacant lots in terms of green infrastructure like.


And air and water well, water quality you mentioned, but air quality as well, I would imagine would be improved.

Yeah. I think so. You know, I think we have probably less information on improvements to air quality as we do for stormwater. Quality in terms of kind of green infrastructure.

But I think probably that the more research that's done, you're gonna see that correlation.


So you're seeing this trick going through to new developments and how they're being designed in a biophilic way from the ground up?


Yeah. So, That's the, so this new database that we're about to launch on the Biophilic Cities website is looking at that type of new development and just the the commercial value alone the opportunity and the demand for these types of spaces, is driving that type of investment.

So, at all levels potentially, you know, there's, you're bringing value to these landscapes by bringing in biophilic elements. People are, are more willing to occupy these spaces. There's greater demand, greater value that's brought with these investments that are recouped, in terms of kind of your ability to to move these properties forward.


We're in danger of scope creep here, but, you know, I'll cycle paths and, you know, the the means to be able to exercise within the local area. Is that part of biophilic design?


Yeah. So, you know, public access, you know, the ability to move through the landscape is is absolutely a huge piece of it you know, a well designed city is one that you don't have to get into your car. Right? So the ability to engage in micro mobility and and connect along these spaces to the places that you occupy on a daily basis is one hundred percent.

Provides that opportunity to have nature be part of your life. You improve an area, the prices in the of the area go up and then the were living in that can't afford to live there anymore. Exactly. Right. And so, you know, we're starting to think about kind of innovative financial mechanisms like land value capture So when we create a park and invites investment, the property values go up, capturing that increase in property value for reinvestment in, you know, community based programs and projects, affordable housing, you know, that's one way to kind of directly, you know, capture the financial results of what you know is gonna happen.

So interesting approaches like that. And I think we're gonna have to just continue to innovate.


What is is there anything that doesn't really? What what falls outside scope of biophilic design when looking at, you know, when looking at a city, it seems like it actually does cover everything is what's not included.


Yeah. So, you know, I think where, you know, we start talking about Mission Creek and, you know, making the conversation too broad is things that are extremely valuable like energy conservation, you know, run so closely with these other biophilic projects that we are talking about

But I think arguably part of a different conversation, a different response to the challenges of of climate change is how do we become more energy efficient Right. You know, there's the ties because how do you become more energy efficient while you drive cars less, and so we we build paths and trails that we wanna use.

So You know, it's there's a close connection, but there's definitely that potential to create really energy efficient cities that are very sterile. That sometimes the economics might not stack up, from a developer's perspective, for example, it needs to be measures that, reflect the experience of living there that, you know, are somehow binding the health well, you know, the emotional side of it, the health and well-being side of it. Yeah. So there is a wide variety of those types of mechanisms that are becoming more common.

You know, we've seen it for decades in terms of kind of, you know, a set aside for open space.

But cities are starting to understand kind of, you know, if we need to we want better water quality we're building new developments. We're creating a lot of impermeable surface.

A certain percentage of that has to be green base so that you capture on-site a certain percentage of the stormwater and treated on-site before it ever leaves and becomes part of the city's sewer systems.

Right. So that's a, we've seen that for a while, in in cities in so then now you're starting to see things like, you know, bird friendly ordinances, which are, you know, talking about, well, what's the impact biodiversity wise on local ecosystem in terms of kind of the facades that we are using and and how we develop landscapes So it's a really wide range, and I think the challenge for cities is how do you invite investment in terms of new development how do you kind of capture and encourage new development that's thinking about these these, this wider biophillic conversation but then also thinking about the impacts for affordable housing and things like that.

But without creating a matrix that makes it too expensive to invest. So it's an ongoing balance.

And I think we probably air on the side of of regulating less to encourage new development, when we should probably be you know, thinking a little bit more extensively about, you know, upfront what are the types of places that we wanna see in the long term. Way long after the developers are gone. Yeah. Absolutely.

So it's been ten years now, so I think you said since you teamed up with Tim, if that's right. Yeah. And tell us about those ten years there. What have you seen?


What's your impression? Are you optimistic or pessimistic about biophilic cities going forward?


Yeah. You know, in ten years, you know, at the outset, we were describing what the term biophilic means and that generally took up the entire conversation, you know, to the point where we we were thinking, well, should we continue to use the term biophilic?

But now I think the understanding and the level of conversation that's happening that recognizes the value of nature in cities is so at the top of the priority for conservation internationally that that's an easy place to start So it's it's really thinking now about, well, if we, we have this kind of agreement in this general acceptance, How do we make it happen? How do we start to kind of build those pilot projects? How do we start to do things on the ground?

To really illustrate, the value of these, these different types of, benefits that we're talking about.


And the United Nations, seventeen sustainable development goals. To what extent are they reflected in biophilic cities?


Yeah. So I've there's definitely a close correlation We have a internal platform for our partners where we share ideas. And one of the things that we track is these different interventions, these case studies that we're sharing, you know, how are they reflected in the SDGs.

And internationally, you know, we're continuing to evolve in terms of kind of what we are agreeing to developing So just in the last year, huge step forwards in terms of international commitments for biodiversity, you know, recognizing that we have these twin crisis of climate change as well as biodiversity loss, and what can we do? Like the net biodiversity gain in the UK, to to address those issues.


So, I think one of the lessons we're learning from the twentieth century, is that, you know, we need to be more local and slow down.

I think biophysics city design can help deliver.


Yeah. I think, absolutely.

You know, when I was just getting started with Biophilic Cities, I remember hearing a podcast about conservation in the twenty first century, and the number one point of discussion was urban landscapes. You know, the twentieth century was about protecting wild spaces in the places that we can travel to on vacation or visit, on a less, you know, regular basis, but then, you know, now with this concept and understanding of the value of nature every day, we we really need to have on our doorstep, especially when we're global population that is absolutely increasing on a daily basis in terms of our urbanization.

You know, the numbers are seventy percent of global populations by two thousand and fifty are gonna be in urban spaces. So if we wanna design places to connect with nature, they to be where those people are living, and that's that's cities.


JD, thank you very much for your time on this Biophilic Cities Project Podcast

Sharing with us sharing with us your insights and knowledge, and helping us to better understand how, you know, the the future of, of our cities could be.

 And it looks like a pretty good future as well if we can implement more of these biophysics to project ideas.


Thanks very much. Thanks, Paul, for having me.

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