Local Action for Biodiversity

Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB) is a global urban biodiversity programme coordinated by ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability. The LAB Pioneer WorkNet began in 2006 with a select group of local and regional authorities from around the world, representing over 54 million citizens. Referred to as the ‘LAB Pioneers’, these local authorities are currently international leaders in managing and conserving biodiversity at the local level.


At the ICLEI World Congress in June 2009, it was unanimously accepted to adopt the LAB Programme as the global ICLEI Biodiversity Programme. Most of the original LAB Pioneers have joined LAB’s other WorkNets; which include the LAB Biodiversity & Climate Change WorkNet and the LAB Biodiversity & CEPA (Communication, Education and Public Awareness) WorkNet. In addition, the LAB Food & Agriculture WorkNet is currently being developed. New cities are invited to join the new phase of the LAB Pioneers WorkNet to implement biodiversity management in their local government.


The LAB Programme is an accessible and enabling platform for committed, leading local governments from around the world. This is achieved by profiling and promoting the importance of urban biodiversity and the role of local governments in its management, as well as by sharing the experiences, successes and challenges of urban biodiversity management in the participating cities and local authorities.  Furthermore, technical support, networking opportunities, and advocacy are provided.


Download the LAB Brochure


Local Action for Biodiversity Goals

By recognising the role of local governments in the sustainable management of urban biodiversity, ICLEI’s LAB Programme highlights the need for increased political support for biodiversity at local level and the integration of biodiversity considerations into all aspects of local governance. The LAB Initiative aims to address these concerns through the following project goals:


  • Profiling local governments and the important role they play in biodiversity management.
  • Advocating for, and promoting the importance of, urban biodiversity worldwide.
  • Raising the status of local government’s management of urban biodiversity. 
  • Actively mainstreaming biodiversity into all decision-making and planning processes at local level.
  • Facilitating lesson-sharing among local authorities across the globe.
  • Producing and disseminating good practice biodiversity case examples.
  • Leading the way for the next generation of participating cities in future ICLEI / LAB programmes. 
  • Cooperating and networking globally with a wide range of stakeholders.


The LAB Programme will also focus on developing a local government network for biodiversity action. This will promote a better understanding of local government biodiversity issues, leading to the implementation of appropriate measures within the participating local governments.