The URBES Project

In the framework of the BiodivERsA-supported project, URBES, a fact-sheet has been prepared, entitled, Biodiversity and ecosystem services: the foundation for human health and well-being. More»


New local governance survey

The United Nations University - Institute of Advanced Studies (UNU-IAS) in collaboration with ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability (ICLEI) is now launching an online survey of “Local Governance on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services”. More»


December 2012 Newsletter now out!

Season’s greetings from the ICLEI Cities Biodiversity Center! We are pleased to announce our latest newsletter covering some important events that have occurred over the past few months. Along with other exciting news, we take a look at key highlights of the 11th Conference of the Parties of the Convention on Biological Diversity in Hyderabad, India at some of the outcomes that will shape our future endeavors. More»

Kaohsiung hosts international LAB conference

The City of Kaohsiung, who has joined the Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB) program and URBIS initiative, recently hosted an International Conference on Local Action for Biodiversity. More»


Natural Solutions for Urban Areas in Europe

“Natural Solutions for Urban Areas in Europe”provided a good overview of European initiatives aimed at the protection and restoration of biodiversity and natural ecosystems and services in urban areas. More»

City of Jerusalem Wins Society for Protection of Nature Award for Urban Nature Protection

The Jerusalem Municipality was selected recipient of the 2012 Society for the Protection of Nature (SPNI) award for nature conservation and environmental protection. More»

The most dangerous animal in the City

Urbanization is fundamentally changing the nature of our planet. With the expected doubling in size of the world's urban areas by 2030, a new group of actors are coming forward: local and sub-national authorities. More»


Cities of the world band together for biodiversity at Cities for Life: a parallel event to CBD COP 11

Close to 500 participants, including approximately 220 local government representatives from 47 countries, covering every major region of the world attended the knowledge-packed city and sub-national biodiversity summit, Cities for Life, held in parallel with the CBD COP 11 on 15 and 16 October in Hyderabad, India. Read more here.


Highlights from the UN CBD COP11 and Cities for Life Summit

A look back at the recent UN CBD COP11 and Cities for Life Summit held in Hyderabad, India and the important outcomes these events generated. More»




Launch of the Cities and Biodiversity Outlook Report

Mr Bakary Kante - Director, Division of Environmental Law and Conventions (DELC), charged with carrying out the functions of United Nations Environmental Programme - said during the launch of the Cities and Biodiversity Outlook Report at the on-going COP 11 in Hyderabad, India, “We cannot stop the growth of cities but we can make the cities more environmentally friendly for our survival and the action is now.” More»



ICLEI and the CBD sign MoU

The Cities for Life Summit, which launched on 15 October, 2012, was marked by a momentous occasion: the signing of an MoU between ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability and the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity. More»


Ville de Grande-Synthe: The newest signatory to the Durban Commitment

Ville de Grande-Synthe has become the latest signatory to the Durban Commitment. More»




Biodiversity and Urban Planning

Metropolitan areas in Europe have seen many new initiatives implemented with the goal of reducing biodiversity loss by increasing the role that nature plays, informing citizens and stopping the encroachment of urban development on natural zones. More»


Edmonton honored

The City of Edmonton, a remarkable LAB Pioneer city, has been honored by the Government of Alberta, with the 2012 Minister’s Award for Municipal Excellence. More»

COP11 kicks off in India

Representatives from over 170 countries today begandeliberations in Hyderabad, India, on the way forward to protect the planet’s biodiversity. More»

Local Government Roadmap Through COP11

In close view of the 11th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD COP11) and the associated Cities for Life Summit, ICLEI is recommending a "Local Government Roadmap through COP11" comprising a selection of relevant events handpicked for comprising explicit foci on urban and local government issues. View here for the timetable and event details.



Greening in the Red Zone: Thoughts on disaster, resilience and community greening in the peopled landscape

At the international conference Resilience 2008, which gathered more than 600 leading scientists, business leaders and politicians in Stockholm, Sweden, I was struck by the Changing Matters art exhibit that explored resilience themes. More»

CBC Special Edition Newsletter

The ICLEI Cities Biodiversity Center is pleased to give you our latest Newsletter covering some important events over the past few months. Brazil played host to not only the Rio+20, but to Urban Nature, the ICLEI World Congress and Rio Pavilion. Download it here.

ICLEI attends Western Cape Climate Change Strategy Stakeholder Workshop

On the 26 September the Western Cape Government, South Africa, held a stakeholder workshop in order to seek input into the revision of the provinces Climate Change Strategy. More»



Designing Integrated Ecologies: Real Estate, Ecosystems, and Everyday Perception

In 1990 the municipal landfill of the City of Elizabeth, New Jersey (near New York City) was officially closed and a leachate system, layers of cleaner soils, and two brand new wetlands were constructed. More»


IUCN Members elect an experienced new President

On 12 September 2012, at the World Conservation Congress in Jeju, South Korea, Members of the world’s oldest and largest environmental organization, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), elected Mr Zhang Xinsheng of China as their new President. More»



Cities for Life

The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) is an international treaty with three main goals: conservation of biodiversity; sustainable use of biodiversity; and fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising from the use of genetic resources. More»



ICLEI BiodiverCities Advisory Committee forges institutional linkage with URBIO

The ICLEI Cities Biodiversity Center is delighted to have established an institutional link between its BiodiverCities Advisory Committee and the Urban Biodiversity and Design (URBIO) network. More»



Cities and biodiversity: a call for up-scaled action

For all of us working in the field of “cities and biodiversity”, it is well worth reflecting on our achievements. We can take personal satisfaction knowing that we contribute to a meaningful cause with tangible results. More»


IUCN World Conservation Congress opens in style

On 6 September in a lavish colourful ceremony, the IUCN World Conservation Congress opened in Jeju, South Korea. More»



Joondalup reaches Milestone 5

The City of Joondalup has recently achieved Milestone 5, the last milestone of the ICLEI Water Campaign Program. More»






Working with Nature: UN-Habitat produces new guidance

UN-Habitat, a long standing partner of ICLEI, recently produced a series of publications, entitled, Urban Patterns for a Green Economy. More»






Urban Nature roundup

Immediately prior to the ICLEI World Congress, the ICLEI Cities Biodiversity Center partnered with the City of Belo Horizonte, SEBRAE and the Secretariat of Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) to host the third Urban Nature Forum. More»



ACROS host GBIF African Regional

From 17-18 July 2012, African "Node Managers" of the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) convened in the Rwandan city of Kigali. More»



CBO media package now online

Check the media package of CBO materials here and find out interesting facts about the assessment and its pre-launch at Rio+20!







Building global collaboration for biodiversity intelligence

Public to play major role in mobilizing expanded range of data needed to preserve vital functions of life on Earth, conference concludes. More»




Rio Pavilion

The Rio Conventions Pavilion concluded on Friday, 22 June, with Cities Day. Sessions included: local leadership driving global change; cities spurring change - tools and techniques for integrated urban planning; and a sustainable future for our children - the FURUSATO movement. Here is a gallery of images.

1000 Days for the Planet

Coinciding with the opening of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio +20), Montreal Space for Life is opening the doors of the Base Camp of 1000 Days for the Planet, a three-year expedition aboard the schooner Sedna IV. More»




Newsflash: Hyderabad announcement

Commissioner of Hyderabad, Babu M.T. Krishna, announced at the ICLEI Urban Nature Forum in Belo Horizonte on the 14 June 2012, that there will be a City and Subnational Biodiversity Summit as part of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) Eleventh Conference of the Parties (COP) in October 2012. The theme of the city event is ‘City’s for Life’. This will be a two day event, on the 15 and 16 October held in the city of Hyderabad, India. Further information will be forthcoming in the next few months.


Rio Pavilion Cities Day: 22 June 2012, Athlete’s Park, Rio+20

The Rio Conventions Pavilion is an outreach platform that explores trade-offs, synergies and alignment between the three Rio conventions and also water-related development goals. More»






Urban Nature Forum official message

Over the past few days the ICLEI Cities Biodiversity Center, in partnership and with thanks to the City of Belo Horizonte, SEBRAE and the Secretariat of Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) has hosted the third Urban Nature Forum here in Belo Horizonte. More»


Rio+20 Global Town Hall

What can be done, particularly by local city governments, to address global issues and follow a path of sustainable development? These urgent questions are explored in the Cities and Biodiversity Outlook (CBO), the world’s first global assessment of the links between urbanization, biodiversity and ecosystem services. More»




Urban Nature 13 – 14 June 2012

Urban Nature
13 – 14 June 2012
In Belo Horizonte, Brazil
ICLEI’s international biodiversity symposium:

Urban Nature: 13 – 14 June 2012

Just bafore the Rio+20 20 - 22 June, Rio de Janeiro and before the ICLEI World Congress: 14 – 17 June. Dor more information and the event programme visit Here»



May 22 was International Day for Biological Diversity

Marine Biodiversity is the theme for this year's International Day for Biological Diversity (IDB). More»





CEPA development in Cape Town

The City of Cape Town in collaboration with ICLEI - Cities biodiveristy Centre are busy developing a CEPA evaluation Toolkit for Local Governments. This is in the testing phase and will be launched in the next few months.





ICLEI-Kaohsiung signs host Capacity Centre agreement with ICLEI!

ICLEI and Kaohsiung, Taiwan/Chinese Taipei  have come together to establish a capacity centre on sustainability for ICLEI's East Asian members. More»

Earthscan publishes updated TEEB volume

Earthscan has published the final volume in a series on the influential study into The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB). More»






Mainstreaming the Economics of Nature

The ICLEI CBC team was represented by Sarah Birch at the TEEB 2012 Conference in Leipzig, Germany from 19-22 March, 2012. More»




Jerusalem Metropolitan Region Biosphere Workshop

The First International URBIS (Urban Biosphere) Workshop is being hosted by the Municipality of Jerusalem from Saturday 10 to Monday 12 March 2012. More»



BiodiverCities March 2012 Newsletter

Presenting the CBC's latest 2012 Newsletter. Inside you will find articles on: ICLEI to Launch 3 Cutting-Edge Tools for Local Governments, Jerusalem hosts URBIS Workshop, Politiques urbaines et biodiversité, URBES Kicks off in Stockholm and much More»







Bojanala platinum district municipality launches The State of the Environment Report

The Bojanala Platinum District Municipality is the only municipality in the North West Province of South Africa to develop a State of the Environment Report. More»


ICLEI Welcomes the New ‘Implementation Focused’ Executive Secretary of the CBD

ICLEI Cities Biodiversity Center welcomes the appointment of Braulio Ferreira de Souza Dias to the helm of the Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD). More»


LAB welcomes its newest member, Helsingborg

ICLEI Cities Biodiversity Centre (CBC) is delighted to welcome the City of Helsingborg, Sweden, an active ICLEI member, as the latest city to join the Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB) Pioneer project. More» 


Montpellier joins LAB Pioneer Project

The ICLEI - Cities Biodiversity Centre is delighted to welcome Montpellier, France as the latest city to join LAB Pioneer Project. More»




Vitoria-Gasteiz wins Green Capital Award

ICLEI’s Cities Biodiversity Center congratulates the City of Vitoria-Gasteiz, the capital of the Basque country in northern Spain for being awarded the European Green Capital Award. More»



The City of Joondalup wins the “World’s Most Liveable City Award"

The City of Joondalup wins the “World’s Most Liveable City Award of 2011” at the UN endorsed annual International Awards for Liveable Communities (LivCom). More»



Jerusalem LAB Hosts International Biodiversity Workshop

On 13 and 14 December 2011, Jerusalem LAB hosted an international workshop on “Leveraging Urban Nature and Biodiversity for Local Development”. More»





Rio Pavilion launch a success

The Department of Environmental Affairs hosted a successful launch of the Rio Pavilion last night that included many high-level speakers. Programme Director Fundisile Mketeni, Deputy Director-General: Biodiversity and Conservation, introduced Keynote speaker, Minister Naledi Pandor - South African Minister of Science and Technology. More»



ICLEI BiodiverCities October Newsletter

The ICLEI Cities Biodiversity Center (formerly known as LAB) is delighted to bring you our latest BiodiverCities newsletter. It will give you an overview of some of what our team has been up to over the past few months. More»





3rd Expert Workshop on the Development of the City Biodiversity Index (CBI)

The 3rd Expert Workshop saw a multitude of experts come together to refine the self-assessment tool for the City Biodiversity Index, also known as the Singapore Index. More»



The Durban Local Government Convention: adapting to a changing climate — Towards COP17 / CMP7 and beyond

Registration for the Durban Local Government Convention: adapting to a changing climate – towards COP17/CMP7 and beyond -  is now open. For more information visit our page.

Click here to download your registration form and click here for the first announcement.


Launch of Green Economy Cities Report

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) released the Green Economy Cities Report this week at the Gwangju Summit of the Urban Environmental Accords, in Korea. More»



FAO Food for the Cities multi-disciplinary initiative position paper

ICLEI is pleased to announce a newly launched publication by the FAO, entitled “ Food, Agriculture and Cities - Challenges of food and nutrition security, agriculture and ecosystem management in an urbanizing world". For more on this innovative publication see here.



Rio Conventions’ Ecosystems and Climate Change Pavilion

ICLEI-LGs for Sustainability convened the first session of the UNCCD COP 10 Rio Conventions' Pavilion on 10 October in Changwon, South Korea. More»



Global workshop on climate adaptation: Korea

On 7 October 2011 the “Global workshop on climate adaptation: Biodiversity and carbon absorption for local action” was hosted in Changwon City, South Korea. More»



International Collaboration Enables Greater Access to Biodiversity Information

Species-level data and occurrence maps now reach a wider spectrum of users thanks to standardized data and improved system interoperability. More»


City of Edmonton entrenches Convention on Biological Diversity in its environmental strategic plan

The City of Edmonton, Alberta, is pleased to announce that it has incorporated the tenets of the Convention on Biological Diversity into its long-term environmental planning process. More»


A statement for the FAO seminar from Ms Kobie Brand - ICLEI Africa Executive Director

Kobie Brand, ICLEI Cities Biodiversity Center's Global Biodiversity Coordinator, was invited by the Food and Agricultural Organisation to give a plenary in the opening session of a seminar entitled “Climate Change and Cities”. More»


Environmental stalwart Wangari Maathai leaves a lasting legacy

Kenyan environmental and social activist and 2004 Nobel Peace Prize winner Wangari Maathai who passed on Sunday has left a lasting legacy in the work she has done to create awareness and promote the protection of the environment. More»


BiodiverCities Advisory Committee meets in Bonn

The 3rd International Meeting of the BiodiverCities Advisory Committee, formerly known as the LAB Advisory Committee, took place yesterday (4 September 2011), kindly hosted by the City of Bonn, Germany. More»


ICLEI President Launches TEEB Manual for Cities at the Liveable Cities Forum in Montreal

ICLEI President, David Cadman, launched the latest TEEB tool for cities, The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB) Manual for Cities: Ecosystem Services in Urban ManagementMore»

Liveable Cities Forum kicks off in Montréal

The Liveable Cities Forum: Designing Biodiversity Friendly Communities, started yesterday with a high level panel and a host of interesting technical discussions on urban biodiversity from cities around the world. More»


Montréal signs the Durban Commitment

At a ceremony hosted by the Mayor of Montréal, Honourable Gérald Tremblay, at the Montreal City Hall yesterday - The City of Montréal became the latest signatory of the Durban Commitment. More»

Regional Workshop for Eastern Africa on Updating National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans (NBSAPs)

Kigali, Rwanda

The Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (SCBD) is currently facilitating a series of regional workshops to facilitate the review of their Parties’ national biodiversity strategies and action plans (NBSAPs). This was the second of such workshops which focused on the east African Countries. More»


Environment Expo and Youth Conference: Cape Winelands District Municipality, SA

South Africa's Cape Winelands District Municipality, an ICLEI Cities Biodiversity Center LAB Pioneer, hosted their 2nd Annual Cape Winelands Environment Expo and Youth Conference, from 30 June – 1 July 2011 at Nelson’s Creek Estate in Paarl. The 2-day learning event aimed at school children, provided a significant opportunity for raising awareness about the challenges posed by flood risks, veld fires, habitat and biodiversity loss and the degradation and depletion of natural resources, among others. More»

ICLEI Cities Biodiversity Center launches new Resource webpage

Download biodiversity resources for local authorities

The RESOURCES webpage acts as a point source of all available material recommended by ICLEI Cities Biodiversity Center, where one can access information on local authorities and biodiversity from one convenient webpage. More»


Cape Town publishes Smart Living Handbook

Including a chapter on biodiversity

The City of Cape Town, an ICLEI Cities Biodiversity Center LAB Pioneer, has published the Smart Living Handbook - Making sustainable living a reality in Cape Town homes. With a growing public awareness of individual contributions to environmental problems in cities around the globe, this comprehensive guide to various practical solutions is sure to be welcomed. This Handbook, specific to Cape Town, is a guide to living in a sustainable and resource-efficient manner on a daily basis, by following simple steps that will help protect the environment, improve household safety and reduce expenses.

Themes covered in the Handbook include energy, water, waste and biodiversity. To download the Smart Living Handbook from the City of Cape Town website, click here.

Best Short Film award for SANBI's "The Guardian"

At the recent 2011 Wild Talk Africa international film festival, the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI), along with the Social Transformation & Empowerment Projects (STEPS), received the ROSCAR Award for Best Short Film. The ceremony was held at Spier Estate near Cape Town, South Africa. More»

ICLEI & UN-HABITAT Sign MoU which includes Biodiversity Clause

ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability and the United Nations Human Settlement Programme UN-HABITAT signed a Memorandum of Understanding earlier this month, which included a clause on cooperation around biodiversity. More»


Kaohsiung City joins LAB on World Environment Day!

ICLEI Cities Biodiversity Centre welcomes Kaohsiung City as the newest LAB Pioneer!

Yesterday, Sunday 5 June 2011, the world celebrated the United Nations’ World Environment Day, under the theme of Forests: ‘Nature at your Service’ and ICLEI CBC welcomed our latest participant, Kaohsiung City in Taiwan. Read more »


Youth, Climate Change and Forests in South Africa

ICLEI Cities Biodiversity Center will be taking part in a panel discussion, on the theme: Forests: Nature at Your Service. The event is hosted by the United Nations Information Centre (UNIC), the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in South Africa, and the National Library of South Africa. Read more»


LAB Pioneer city – Curitiba – launches the world’s largest, urban bus and it is powered by bio-fuel

The City of Curitiba is not only a leader in the field of biodiversity as a LAB Pioneer member but is also a world leader in urban public transport. Read more

International Day for Biological Diversity: 22 May 2011

On 22 May 2000, the Final Act of the Conference for the Adoption of the Agreed Text of the Convention on Biological Diversity took place in Nairobi, Kenya. The text was adopted, and to commemorate the event the United Nations (UN) proclaimed 22 May "The Internaitonal Day for Biological Diversity (IDB)". The first IDB was created by the UN General Assembly in 1993 to take place on 29 December every year, in an effort to raise awareness and understanding of issues related to biodiversity. Although the date has changed, the message remains the same. We hope that all Local Action for Biodiversity participants and friends will take part in the celebrations of this year's theme: Forest Biodiversity.

For more information please visit the related CBD webpage, which includes a video message from United Nations Goodwill Ambassador for biodiversity, Edward Norton. Please write to us about how you celebrated International Day for Biological Diversity, at We wish all our ICLEI cities and especially LAB Pioneer local governments a wonderful International Biodiversity Day!

2011 marks the beginning of the United Nations Decade on Biodiversity: 2011 – 2020, which intends to contribute to the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity and the Aichi Biodiversity targets, and mainstream biodiversity at various levels. For more please visit the United Nations Decade on Biodiversity website.


International Day for Biological Diversity in Mexico City

Mexico City wishes all ICLEI and LAB participants and friends a happy International Day for Biological Diversity for 22 May 2011!

Download Mexico City's International Day for Biological Diversity poster here »



Montreal celebrates International Day for Biological Diversity

Crowds gathered at the Biosphere environmental museum in Montreal to mark the International Day for Biological Diversity as a contribution to the celebration of the 2011 International Year of Forests.


Download the official press release here»


Edmonton celebrates Biodiversity Week

On Tuesday 10 May, the City of Edmonton’s Mayor Steven Mandel officially declared the week of 14 – 22 May 2011 “Edmonton Biodiversity Week”. He signed an official Proclamation to declare this, which can be downloaded here.


Earth ALIVE - Edmonton Biodiversity Week is held in the City of Edmonton, Canada, in support of International Biodiversity Day, which takes place on Sunday 22 May, to raise awareness of urban biodiversity conservation within the City. The City of Edmonton has developed a number of biodiversity outreach projects that focus on community engagement to promote urban biodiversity and discuss how it can be managed. Earth ALIVE involves live entertainment, hands-on activities and a series of entertaining public workshops to showcase the various ways in which the community can go about protecting biodiversity, with topics such as ‘naturescaping’ your backyard, beneficial insects… and ones to look out for, creating and installing bee blocks, worm composting, Edmonton’s urban forest and backyard birds.

Edmonton is an active Local Action for Biodiversity Pioneer, and ICLEI GBC is delighted to see Earth ALIVE underway in celebration of International Biodiversity Day. Read more about Earth ALIVE here »


Urban greening in the City of Bonn

Those who frequent the streets of Bonn, Germany, will have noticed that the city has undergone a subtle yet positive transition: between autumn 2010 and spring 2011, a total of 287 new trees were planted within the city’s urban area. Commissioned by the Department of Urban Greening, the trees were planted in city squares, parks, playgrounds, cemeteries and along city streets. The most commonly used trees were maple, red chestnut, sweet gum, black locust, linden and hornbeam, while more exotic types were reserved for parks and cemeteries.


The City monitors the state of trees within the urban area, as they are under constant pressure due to emissions and limited space. Today, more than 80 000 urban trees are the responsibility of the Department of Urban Greening in the City of Bonn.  View the full article on the City of Bonn official website »


ICLEI’s Global Biodiversity Centre welcomes Grand-Synthe, France, as the latest LAB Pioneer!

Located on the northern Nord-Pas-de-Calais region of France, in the city of Dunkerque, Grand-Synthe is a recognised leader in biodiversity management. Selected from a group of 80 French municipalities, Grand-Synthe was awarded the prize of French Capital of Biodiversity at an awards ceremony in Paris in October 2010. We are delighted to welcome Mayor Damien Carème and the municipality of Grand-Synthe onto ICLEI’s global biodiversity network.


Visit the official Grand-Synthe website


Proceedings of the 2011 ICLEI/IUCN LAB International Technical Workshop

Bergrivier, South Africa
31 January – 4 February 2011

ICLEI’s global biodiversity programme, Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB), run in partnership with IUCN, hosted the 2011 LAB International Technical Workshop in Bergrivier South Africa in February this year.

The primary objective of the LAB International Technical Workshops is to provide the opportunity for participants of the global biodiversity programme to share good practice, take stock of their progress, network and learn from each other. Feedback from participants was a major element of this workshop, in order to improve the programme and better serve participants going forward.

Please find the proceedings of the workshop here »


Biodiversity management in the Namib Desert

The Gobabeb Times

The Gobabeb Training and Research Centre, an internationally recognised Namibian and SADC Training and Research Institution in Namibia, conducts environmental research in the Namib Desert. The latest edition of the Gobabeb Times is themed 'Values of the Namib' and covers perspectives on biodiversity and resources within the Namib Desert; outlining the challenge of managing biodiversity while accessing natural resources. Gobabeb is located 120km south of LAB Pioneer city, Walvis Bay. Download "Values of the Namib" here.


International LAB workshop 2011 in Bergrivier Municipality

The third International LAB Workshop was hosted in partnership with the Bergrivier Municipality in South Africa from 31 January to 4 February 2011. This meeting of local governments from around the world showcased cutting-edge biodiversity management at the local level and inspiring strategic input into the LAB Programme as a whole. More »


Click here for the list of presentations


Join the LABNetwork now and get your free copy of the LAB Guidebook!

To join the LABNetwork, contact Local Action for Biodiversity at


Look out for upcoming workshops and events where the LAB Guidebook will be available, such as:


The first ICLEI congress under the Urban Leadership for African Sustainability (ULAS) initiative, this highly-anticipated congress will provide an accessible platform for African local leaders, their associations, national government, technical experts and development partners to engage on urban climate change solutions for Africa. To register, e-mail, or visit


LAB presents at UNU-IAS campus seminar in Yokohama, Japan

Yoshiko Sayama and André Mader in post-presentation discussions

LAB technical coordinator, Andre Mader, was invited by Jose Puppim de Oliveira, Deputy Director of the United Nations University’s Institute for Advanced Studies (UNU-IAS) to present a seminar on the work of LAB at the UNU-IAS campus in Yokohama, Japan on 12 January 2011.


Andre was joined by Yoshiko Sayama of ICLEI’s Japan Office, who complemented the case-study-rich seminar with examples from Japan. This was an excellent opportunity to engage

with academics and the several local government practitioners who attended the seminar, and generated significant interest in LAB’s work. The event was broadcast live online. Both the presentation and discussion that followed can be viewed online at the UNU-IAS website.


Groundbreaking Achievement for Cities and Local Governments at CBD COP10

CBD COP10 Feedback Report

The adoption of the Plan of Action for Cities at the CBD COP10 showed unprecedented support for local governments. ICLEI/IUCN’s Local Action for Biodiversity Programme played a central role in supporting the uptake of the Plan and provided a critical platform for local governments at this important event.

Download the LAB team’s feedback report from the CBD COP10, available in:


High Resolution

Low Resolution


Local Governments Mobilising Globally at CBD COP10

The 10th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD COP10), to be held in Nagoya, Aichi Prefecture, Japan from 18 to 29 October this year is perhaps the most important opportunity thus far for local government biodiversity advocacy at the highest international level. ICLEI and partners will play a central role in facilitating a platform for local government at this important event.

Click here for a full report on the run-up to CBD COP10. The report provides background information and outlines what local governments, ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, and partners aim to achieve at the event. It also lists events that ICLEI is involved in at the COP.  

Please contact ICLEI’s global biodiversity team: Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB) should you require more information, at


LAB Workshop 2011: 1 - 4 February, Bergriver Municipality, South Africa

ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability and LAB are delighted to announce the upcoming International Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB) Workshop 2011, to be held in the biodiversity-rich area of Bergrivier Municipality, from 1 - 4 February 2011. The workshop is dedicated to local governments participating in the LAB Programme. Join LAB before 15 December and your local government will qualify for the LAB Workshop.


Bergriver Municipality, a picturesque region within South Africa's Western Cape, will host the LAB Workshop. The municipality boasts a variety of natural attractions, extending from the sea to mountains to farmland (including wine farms within the Cape Floral Kingdom) and is also a global biodiversity hotspot.


For more information regarding the LAB Workshop 2011, please see the Press Release, or e-mail


Jerusalem hosts international seminar dedicated to Green Building and Urban Nature

In order to examine sustainable planning guidelines and the protection of valuable natural heritage sites in the city, the City of Jerusalem will host an international seminar on Green Building and Urban Nature, from 1-2 December 2010. See more »


ICLEI/IUCN LAB side event at CBD COP10

A video recording of the ICLEI/ IUCN Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB) official side event held at the tenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD COP10) is available for download on the CBD website.


To view the video, click here.


Parties adopt the Plan of Action on Cities

29 October 2010

The Parties adopted the Plan of Action on Sub-national Governments, Cities and other Local Authorities and Biodiversity (2011-2020) today, the closing day of the tenth Conference of the Parties to the Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD COP) in Nagoya, Japan.


Read more here


International Cities Join ICLEI’s Global Biodiversity Programme: Local Action for Biodiversity

Press release: 27 October 2010

Leading international cities publically joined ICLEI’s Global Biodiversity Programme, Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB), during a press conference at the tenth Conference of the Parties to the Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD COP10) showing their commitment to biodiversity management at the local level. Read more here


Mayors Urge Parties to Adopt the Plan of Action on Cities at the City Biodiversity Summit

Download the full declaration.


Press release: 26 October 2010

Nagoya, Japan: The City Biodiversity Summit for local authorities, a parallel event to the tenth Conference of the Parties to the Convention of Biological (CBD COP), was opened with Nations presenting their commitment to the work with local governments in the implementation of the CBD.


In the opening session the nations of Japan, Spain, Brazil, Singapore, Mexico, Canada, South Africa and the United Kingdom highlighted the pivotal role cities and local authorities play in the implementation of the CBD in their countries. Read the full press release here.


Nations Endorsed the Plan of Action on Cities

26 October 2010

Working Group Two of the tenth Conference of the Parties to the Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD COP) has endorsed the Plan of Action on Sub-national Governments, Cities and other Local Authorities and Biodiversity, this afternoon. Read more here


Local to Global Link Strengthened by Sharing of Biodiversity Data

22 October 2010

Nagoya, Japan: ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability - today signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF), the world’s largest multilateral initiative for enabling free and open access to biodiversity data over the Internet


Read more »


Parties pledge their support for the Plan on Cities and Local Authorities at the Negotiations underway at the CBD COP10 in Japan

19 October 2010

Nagoya, Japan: Led by Brazil, Parties Japan, Mexico, South Africa, Jordan and Canada, pledged their support for the Plan of Action on Cities and Local Authorities (2011 – 2020) at the negotiations currently underway at the tenth Conference of the Parties of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD COP10).


Read more »


Local Authorities Feature Strongly in Opening Plenary of CBD COP10 in Japan

18 October 2010

Nagoya, Japan: Cities and local authorities featured strongly in the opening plenary session of the tenth Conference of the Parties of the Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD COP10) in Nagoya, Japan, today.


Read more »


ICLEI events at COP10

To view a full list of ICLEI events taking place at the Tenth Conference of the Parties to the Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD COP10), please click here.


International TEEB Launch in Africa

The International Launch of the The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB) D2 Report for Local and Regional Policymakers & The launch of the ICLEI – Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB) Guidebook


The full report on the TEEB D2 and LAB Guidebook Launch events is available here.


More than 100 delegates, including leaders and high level digintaries from local governments around Africa, experts in the field of biodiversity and climate change, and supporters of ICLEI attended the official launch of TEEB D2 Report held in the South African Parliament, coordinated by ICLEI's global biodiversity team, Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB).


The ICLEI – LAB Guidebook: Biodiversity Management for Local Governments is a unique resource - the first and only of its kind - written for local governments around the world.

The guide gives many practical examples of biodiversity management techniques, derived predominantly from the participants of the LAB Pioneer project. This comprehensive guide walks local governments through all aspects of managing their local biodiversity.


At the function held to launch the ICLEI- LAB Guidebook, 16 local governments from across Africa showed their commitment to local biodiversity by signing ICLEI’s biodiversity charter, the Durban Commitment. These local governments also became part of the global network of local governments committed to biodiversity management, by joining ICLEI’s Local Action for Biodiversity’s LABNetwork.


The full report on the TEEB D2 and LAB Guidebook Launch events is available here.


Mexico City Commits to Protect and Enhance Local Biodiversity, at the ICLEI 20th Anniversary World Congress

Incheon, Korea: Mexico City signed the esteemed Durban Commitment at the ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability 20th Anniversary World Congress, which opened today (5 October 2010) in Incheon, Korea.


Ms. Martha Delgado, the Minister of Environment for Mexico City signed the Commitment, developed by ICLEI’s global biodiversity programme: Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB), committing one of the world’s largest conurbations to enhanced local biodiversity management. Read more »


Green Week Report Back

ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability took part in a very successful European Commission’s Green Week Conference from 1 – 4 June 2010, in Brussels, Belgium.


The focus of Green Week was biodiversity, and ICLEI’s exhibition stand showcased ICLEI’s global biodiversity programme, Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB). The stand drew much interest amongst delegates and ICLEI staff had many interesting and enjoyable meetings with new contacts, stakeholders, partners, supporters and friends. More »


UN names actor Edward Norton as celebrity advocate for preserving biodiversity

United Nations (UN) Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, designated the acclaimed actor and conservation activist, Edward Norton, as the United Nations Goodwill Ambassador for Biodiversity, on 8 July 2010 – the International Year of Biodiversity


In an interview with the UN News Centre Norton said: “I think that [Goodwill] Ambassadors in many ways can play a role in highlighting the models of success that the UN is promoting around the world.” Read more »


Local Action for Biodiversity on European television

Andre Mader, of ICLEI and IUCN's Local Action for Biodiversity’s Programme, was interviewed by three European television stations at the European Commission's Green Week event in Brussels earlier this month. The topic was cities and biodiversity. One of the interviews will appear on Portuguese national television channel RTP2 on Thursday, 17 June 2010 at 19:00 (GMT+2 hours). Peter Defranceschi of ICLEI's Brussels office was also interviewed, on this topic, by a Madrid-based radio station. Further information on Green Week will follow soon.


Curitiba celebrates International Biodiversity Day

22 May 2010 was International Biodiversity Day, and it held a special significance in 2010, the International Year of Biodiversity as declared by the United Nations. Curitiba celebrated accordingly with a series of events held from 19-21 May. The events included lectures, a thematic exposition, biodiversity games and the Green Wave event, all promoted by the Secretariat of the Environment of Curitiba and other municipal secretariats. More »


22 May is International Biodiversity Day in 2010 the International Year of Biodiversity

Global Cities Announce Biodiversity Management Plans on International Biodiversity Day in 2010, the International Year of Biodiversity. Cities around the world will announce their Local Action for Biodiversity Legacy Projects as part of a global celebration of International Biodiversity Day, in 2010 the International Year of Biodiversity, as declared by the United Nations.


The announcement of this project on International Biodiversity Day is part of a global proclamation of 2010 Legacy Projects, where LAB cities around the world announce their legacy initiatives on this day. More»


Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB) at the UN-HABITAT 5th World Urban Forum

ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability’s Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB) Programme team launched LABNetwork, the new LAB entry level initiative for cities and local governments at the UN Habitat’s 5th World Urban Forum (WUF) in Rio de Janerio, Brazil, in March this year. The inaugural meeting of the LAB Advisory Committee, a momentous occasion for the LAB Programme, also took place at the WUF. More»


LABNetwork offers all local governments, not ready to embark on one of the more intense LAB projects, an option to join a new international LAB biodiversity network.


See the LABNetwork brochure here

to read more about LAB, LABNetwork,

joining and benefits.


New vision required to stave off dramatic biodiversity loss, says UN report

Global Biodiversity Outlook 3 (GBO-3) is the flagship publication of the Convention on Biological Diversity. The latest edition edition, to which LAB contributed with case studies and comments, reports that biodiversity loss and climate change need to be addressed as priorities to avoid continued damage to precious ecosystems. The biodiversity targets for 2010 have not been reached, and further massive massive loss of biodiversity is likely if a dramatic change in thinking is not adopted globally.


A press release was issued in Montreal, Canada, on 10 May by the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity. Download the press release here.


The GBO-3 is available at


City Biodiveresity Summit 2010

"Local Governments Acting for Biodiversity"

The City Biodiversity Summit will take place in parallel with the 10th Conference of the Parties (COP10) of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), in Nagoya/Aichi, Japan from 24-26 October 2010. The City Biodiversity Summit will involve local government leaders and practitioners, representatives of organisations and others from around the world, and will cover a wide variety of topics pertinent to biodiversity management at the local level.The City Biodiversity Summit is organized by City of Nagoya and Aichi prefecture in close collaboration with ICLEI-Local Governments for Sustainability and Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity. 


This is an unprecedented opportunity to celebrate the International Year of Biodiversity and to advocate for the importance of engaging cities and local authorities in the post-2010 implementation phase of the Convention. Join us by marking the date on your calendar!! Registration will start in July 2010

For more information on the City Biodiversity Summit, click here.


Cities and Biodiversity Newsletter

The CBD Secretariat has published the first issue of "Cities and Biodiversity Newsletter" with support from ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability and the Global Partnership on Cities and Biodiversity. Have a look at this publication for the latest news relevant to the Global Partnership, as well as recent and up-coming events relevant to local governments and biodiversity management by clicking here.


Local Biodiversity Management Workshops in South Africa

The months of February and March have seen Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB) facilitating workshops in three South African provinces: Western Cape, Mpumalanga and Gauteng, in an effort to raise biodiversity awareness and build local government capacity. Those who attended were given the opportunity to expand their understanding of biodiversity management and the importance of local action for global results, through expert speakers, local government case studies and discussions. Read more »


2010 is the Year of Biodiversity

2010 marks the International Year of Biodiversity. At the launch of this initiative, the UN have warned that biodiversity loss is a wake up call for all governments. UN Chief Ban ki Moon stated that "Biodiversity is life. Biodiversity is our life" - a message to all that the earth will suffer if we continue to lose our biodiversity at the rapid rate which we are experiencing at present.


The United Nations proclaimed 2010 the International Year of Biodiversity to conincide with a deadline adopted in 2002 by national governments to achieve a reduction in the rate of loss of biodiversity. To read more about the launch that took place in Berlin in January, see the following press release:


Launch of the International Year of Biodiversity


To read more on the International Year of Biodiversity see the following press releases:

Biodiversity is a wake-up call

International Year of Biodiversity should include agriculture

Biodiversity is not just about saving exotic species

UN marks 2010 as the Year of Biodiversity

2010 is International Year of Biodiversity


Towards Aichi/Nagoya: Second Curitiba Declaration on Local Authorities and Biodiversity

At the second Curitiba Meeting on Cities and Biodiversity, 95 delegates representing local, regional and national government, NGOs including ICLEI and organisations, met in Curitiba, Brazil. One of the outcomes of this important meeting was the finalisation of a Declaration by local governments, re-emphasising their commitment to biodiversity.  More »


Cities and Biodiversity in Curitiba

Mr Beto Richa - Mayor of Curitiba

ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability – attended the Second Curitiba Meeting on Cities and Biodiversity in Brazil, 6-7 January 2010. Participants at the meeting included the Secretariat of the CBD, ICLEI and its Local Action for Biodiversity programme, UNEP, UN-HABITAT, IUCN’s Countdown 2010, UNESCO, URBIO, academic institutes as well as the cities of Curitiba, Bonn, Nagoya, Montreal and the City State of Singapore. ICLEI Africa's Director, Kobie Brand, launched The Local Government Biodiversity Roadmap. This initiative will advocate for the adoption of a comprehensive Plan of Action for Local Biodiversity Action at the UN CBD COP10, set to take place in Nagoya, Japan in October 2010.


See the following link for more information.


Biodiversity and Climate Change are Inextricably Linked

On the 9 December 2009, ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability hosted an afternoon ‘Biodiversity Session’ in the Local Government LOUNGE, in the Bella Centre in Denmark, during the COP15 climate change talks. The event was facilitated by the ICLEI Africa Secretariat’s Director, Kobie Brand. She announced ICLEI’s intent to launch a new global mobilisation initiative, ‘The Local Government Biodiversity Roadmap’. More »


Thomas Elmqvist, from the Stockholm Resilience Centre, has recently indicated his support for the Biodiversity Roadmap. During the Biodiversity Sessions in the Local Government Climate Lounge, he stated that "now is the time for connection between UN conventions to be made and to bring biodiversity meaningfully into the discussion on climate change". For more, click on the link to the website


An exciting new addition to LAB

Jerusalem is the newest local government to join the second phase of the LAB programme. They are the second local government in the Middle East to join LAB; the first was Abu Dhabi (UAE). Both of these cities are very strategic in terms of biodiversity and we are looking forward to welcoming many other participants from this region. The Jerusalem signing ceremony took place last week and the LAB team also conducted successful workshops with the local council members to share information about local biodiversity and the LAB Programme. Jerusalem joins other exemplary local governments; namely Abu Dhabi, Capital of the United Arab Emirates, Bergrivier Local Municipality and Cape Winelands District Municipality, South Africa, and Brussels Capital Region, Belgium. The LAB team is really excited to welcome all the new participants to the expanding LAB network.


To read more about the biodiversity in Jerusalem, download the brochure.


Abu Dhabi Urban Planning Council (UPC) unveils Natural and Cultural Heritage Strategy to support Plan Abu Dhabi 2030 Guiding Principles

The Abu Dhabi Urban Planning Council, the expert authority behind the visionary Plan Abu Dhabi 2030, has unveiled its Natural and Cultural Heritage Strategy. The Strategy is a project shaped by sensitive coastal and desert ecology concerns and is informed by principles for designating and managing protected areas. More »


New logo for the International Year of Biodiversity Unveiled

The logo and the messaging for the celebration of the International Year of Biodiversity were unveiled on 8 September 2009 in Strömstad, Sweden, on the occasion of the high-level European Union meeting “Visions for Biodiversity Beyond 2010 - People, Ecosystem Services, and the Climate Crisis”.All parties and CBD partners have been encouraged to use the logo in all their planned celebrations for the year. For more, see the press release


Cape Winelands District Municipality – first African municipality to join new phase of LAB

Cape Winelands District Municipality joins LAB

Cape Winelands District Municipality became the first African municipality, and also the first district municipality to join the second phase of the Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB) programme. The agreement was officially signed by Executive Mayor Clarence Johnson at the ICLEI Africa offices in Cape Town on Monday 18 May.


During the signing ceremony, Mayor Johnson highlighted key programmes within the Cape Winelands, commited to the conservation of biodiversity in partnership with strategic roleplayers.

To read more, click here.

Brussels Capital-Region: First to join new phase of LAB

The Brussels Capital-Region is amongst a variety of cities keen to join the next phase of Local Action for Biodiversity. The Brussels Capital-Region recently formally became a participant in the new phase of LAB by signing the Agreement with ICLEI Africa last week at an official signing ceremony in the Belgian capital city. Read More...


ICLEI invites local governments to join its Local Action for Biodiversity Programme

Under the auspices of ICLEI (Local Governments for Sustainability), 21 Pioneer local governments from around the world are currently participating in the urban biodiversity project: Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB). The 21 pioneers recently held their second international workshop where they strongly supported the continuity and expansion of this initiative. These cities now encourage a world-wide invitation to other local governments to join LAB as part of a new project intake, due to start in 2009. Read more...


Fact sheets on Cities & Biodiversity now available in Japanese

Last year, the LAB Project Team were involved in compiling fact sheets on Cities and Biodiversity. Now, in the lead up to the UNCBD COP 10 in Nagoya, Japan next year, these fact sheets are now available in Japanese. Read more...


São Paulo City launches Biodiversity Report

On 22 May 2009, São Paulo City launched the publication of its Biodiversity Report which it completed in terms of its participation in LAB. The launch event which also celebrated International Biodiversity Day 2009, took place in the Modern Art Museum of Ibirapuera Park.


To download São Paulo’s Biodiversity Report, click here.

ICLEI Council Unanimously adopts global LAB Programme

At the ICLEI World Congress, held in June 2009 in Edmonton, a motion was adopted by the ICLEI Council that ICLEI would adopt the Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB) Programme as a global ICLEI Initiative. Read more...


Urban Nature Forum: summary of proceedings

ICLEI President, David Cadman

Friday June 12th marked the beginning of Urban Nature Forum 2009, a side event to the ICLEI World Congress 2009. The event was held in collaboration with ICLEI’s Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB) Initiative and IUCN’s Countdown 2010 programme. Speakers addressed the importance of conserving local urban biodiversity, accomplishments of the LAB Initiative and the vital role of local governments in biodiversity preservation.

Edmonton’s mayor, Stephen Mandel, and ICLEI president and deputy mayor of Vancouver welcomed participants. The event then began with equally high-level input from UN CBD Executive Secretary, Dr Ahmed Djoghlaf. The following two days included informative and participatory presentations and other forms of interaction, with twin foci on the global strategy-level and the hands-on practical level of biodiversity management at the level of local government.


Download a brief summary of the proceedings form the Urban Nature Forum here. The final programme for the event is available for download here. Download presentations from the Urban Nature Forum 2009 here.


Urban Nature 2009- Pre-event to ICLEI World Congress

International Forum on Local Governance and Biodiversity Management

ICLEI Local Governments for Sustainability, ICLEI’s Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB) Programme, and IUCN Countdown 2010 invite you to Urban Nature 2009, taking place in Edmonton, Canada from the 12-13 June 2009. This international forum on local governance and biodiversity conservation is taking place 12-13 June, 2009, just prior to the ICLEI World Congress 2009 in Edmonton.



Biodiversity high on the agenda at ICLEI World Congress

From 14 to 18 June 2009, 600 participants from 57 countries gathered in the City of Edmonton in Western Canada for the triennial World Congress of ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainabiltity, a global network of 1100 cities working on sustainable development. The program touched on many areas of urban environmental sustainability, from Climate & Energy to Biodiversity and from Resilience & Adaptation to Water, in large plenaries and small working groups. Read more...


Upcoming publication: the LAB Guidebook

The LAB Guidebook: a pioneering global publication

ICLEI’s LAB Guidebook, produced in close association with IUCN and the CBD Secretariat, is a highly anticipated upcoming publication which, for the first time ever, will provide practitioners with comprehensive guidelines on the multiple aspects of biodiversity management in the challenging local government context.



Read more and download a promotional booklet on the LAB Guidebook here.

Local Action for Biodiversity Posters

Local Action for Biodiversity has created 2 new posters – one on the Durban Commitment which was developed, founded and signed by the 21 LAB pioneer project participants; the other illustrates innovative local government approaches to managing urban biodiversity around the world as part of the LAB pioneer project.


Download posters here


LAB Ambassador of the Month - Joondalup

The City of Joondalup is this month's LAB ambassador! Thanks to their wide campaigning,their neighbouring Australian local authorities are now also interested in joining the Local Action for Biodiversity Programme. Thank you Joondalup!

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