ICLEI Local Governments for Sustainability
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Urban biodiversity is biological diversity in urban areas. It is heavily influenced by the built environment and the economic, social and cultural dynamics of a respective community.
In the past, biodiversity conservation was viewed as the responsibility of national, provincial and regional governments with little attention given to local government. City governments accross the world have begun to recognize that their role is extremely relevant, especially in light of increasing urbanization.
More local decision makers are realizing that all of the resources that keep human settlements productive, healthy and economically viable must be respected - especially the variety of organisms, ecosystems and natural processes that underpin human survival.  

ICLEI’s Biodiversity Initiative, which began in 2006, initiated a range of pilot projects and aims to involve many more local governments in biodiversity conservation in its next phase. The initiative is preparing an ICLEI Biodiversity Program which will provide a framework for ICLEI members to integrate biodiversity conservation into planning, policy and decision making.

For more introductory information about biodiversity as it relates to local government, see this series of factsheets jointly produced by ICLEI and Countdown 2010.