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From the Editors

Greetings!

March 22nd was World Water Day. This year, the theme was wastewater. While perhaps not the sexiest subject, learning how to reduce and reuse wastewater is critical to ensuring clean water for all and achieving Sustainable Development Goal 6.

The good news is that a powerful tool already exists for managing the stormwater runoff that overwhelms sewer systems and complicates wastewater treatment processes in many cities: green infrastructure. Scaling up nature-based approaches and getting the attention of deep-pocketed investors is the real challenge, says The Nature Conservancy’s Kahlil Kettering.

Late last month, The Nature Conservancy spearheaded a new effort called Naturally Resilient Communities that aims to promote knowledge-sharing and education around the use of nature-based solutions in communities. The platform, which has an interactive website fitted with case studies and reports, has a diverse group of founding partners including urban planners, engineers, county officials and architects.

In other news, Peru was hit with another unexpected wave of terrible floods and landslides, which drew attention to ongoing Green Infrastructure Master Plan developments in Lima.  The US Green Building Council wants to help cities adopt green infrastructure practices too, while Queensland farmers may soon find themselves offsetting their water pollution in the Great Barrier Reef catchment.

Happy reading,

- The Ecosystem Marketplace team    

 
   

Latest News

How Nature-Based Systems Can Slash Wastewater Pollution This World Water Day

Contaminated water has long been part of every urban area’s growing pains, and it’s a major health hazard in rapidly industrializing parts of the developing world. So it's a great theme for this year’s World Water Day. Here’s how people are using nature-based solutions to manage it.

Keep reading at Ecosystem Marketplace.

How Trump’s Budget Hits The Environment, Agency-By-Agency

US President Donald Trump’s proposed 2018 budget deals the environment death by a thousand cuts scattered across at least seven and probably more agencies. Here is a list of the cuts we’ve identified so far, and an open invitation to let us know if we’ve missed anything or gotten anything wrong.

Ecosystem Marketplace explains.

The Infrastructure Opportunity Nobody Is Talking About – Yet

While there isn’t much disagreement that America’s infrastructure needs fixing, determining which areas to prioritize remains a challenge. Which investments will deliver the most bang for our buck? Steve Cochran of the Environmental Defense Fund says investing in coastal restoration presents huge cost-effective opportunities to create new jobs and safeguard national security.

Keep reading at Ecosystem Marketplace.

Lima Kicks Off Development Of 30-Year Green Infrastructure Plan

In 2015, the Peruvian capital of Lima made a significant financial commitment to restore the region’s natural infrastructure to help manage its many water woes. Committing is one thing, however; deploying the finance and implementing nature based projects is quite another. To help them figure out how this should work, Lima’s water utility continues to enlist help and is creating a first-of-its-kind master plan for green infrastructure.

Ecosystem Marketplace has the story.

HERE’S THE DEAL   

Bright Lights, Green Cities

With assistance from its suite of sustainability tools, the US Green Building Council aims to help cities integrate green infrastructure practices into their development. These three rating systems offer rewards and guidance to implementing nature-based interventions.

The Green Building Council has details.

Cleaning Up Colorado’s Forests

For Denver, Colorado, forest restoration activities have become an official part of water management. Late last month, Denver Water renewed a $33 million deal with state and federal forest and conservation agencies to continue tree thinning and other restoration practices, and even expand it to private property.

Keep reading at the Denver Post.

A New Player in the Water Swaps Game

The US West may be at the dawn of a new era in water management, as water markets are repurposed to replenish dried-out ecosystems. There's growing consensus among conservationists and farmers that markets hold significant opportunity, along with a rise in water trading.

The Christian Science Monitor has details.

A Water Guru Offers Advice

After 30 years working on the inside of corporate water management, Hugh Share offers tips to governments, companies and NGOs on advancing water stewardship. Largely: talk less, act more, pay attention to agriculture and always try to improve water policy.

GreenBiz has the story.

A Winner in More Ways Than One

Indigenous and local groups that leverage nature-based solutions to secure food, water and develop sustainable livelihoods could be among 2017’s winners of the Equator Prize. The annual contest is a UN-led initiative that showcases exceptional local innovation, and this year it's focus is on nature-based solutions.

The Asian Tribune has more.

POLICY WATCH

Offsets, Regs Among New Effort to Aid Ailing Great Barrier Reef

Farmers operating in the Great Barrier Reef catchment interested in expanding may soon find themselves purchasing offsets for new impacts. In an attempt to improve water quality in the troubled ecosystem, the Queensland government established pollution limits that includes an offsets component for expanding agricultural activities.

Cairns Post has details.

NEW RESEARCH

Designing Cities the Natural Way

A motley consortium representing community planners, water managers, conservationists, engineers and county governments recently launched a new effort to promote nature-based solutions. Naturally Resilient Communities offers a guide to nature-based planning and case studies for communities.

The American Planning Association explains.

Cities Need More Tree Therapy

Thanks to Google Street Views and researchers from the Future Cities Laboratory, we now have a better sense of how street trees regulate ecosystems services in big cities like Delhi and Shanghai. On top of the cooling effect and cleaner air trees provide to urban areas, researchers found they also reduce the risk of flash flooding - and did we mention that trees are pretty cheap?

Keep reading at Livemint.

Odds are in Nutrient Trading’s Favor in the Chesapeake Bay Region

Can nutrient trading aid efforts to clean up the Chesapeake Bay watershed? New research from the World Resources Institute exploring trading programs in Maryland and Virginia says not only can they provide significant benefits, such programs could help lower overall cleanup costs.

Find out more.

   
   

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