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Unlocking Human Potential for Biodiversity

English
Unlocking Human Potential for Biodiversity
  • Unlocking Human Potential for Biodiversity
  • Graphic Reporting

On the occasion of World Environment Day, June 5, 2020, for which Montréal is the North American host city, Space for Life and the Secretariat of the UN Convention on Biological Diversity organized an event to reflect on and imagine the future of our planet (our cities, our spaces) as well as the cohabitation between species on Earth, humans included.

The virtual meeting, Activating Human Potential for Biodiversity, created a space for communication and exchange on the theme of the environment with more than 170 participants from the scientific, artistic and educational communities, as well as with citizens, activists and Aboriginals from Quebec, Canada and elsewhere in the world, in order to exchange on the orientations of our collective attention, opportunities to be seized in the current context and to define the types of projects to be pursued, developed and initiated.

Regenerating Human Potential - Discussion panel

This virtual encounter brings together four committed scientists
on a unique panel that will address the theme of human potential
in order to identify solutions and make a difference.


Let yourself be inspired
by the words of the panel speakers
by viewing it here

What do we need to understand about human beings—our motivations, our ways of thinking and acting—that could help us develop the most effective policies, actions, communications and projects?

 

Watch extracts from the event

Harvest synthesis

Harvest synthesis
Read a detailed summary of the themes, discussions and shared ideas.

Graphic Reporting

Graphic Reporting
Download all the discussions summarized in an illustration by the artist Mylène Choquette.


Virtual Project Hives

To maintain the spirit of the event "Activating human potential for biodiversity", Espace pour la vie and the Secretariat of the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (SCBD) officially launched the Virtual Project Hives, a new initiative promoting the sharing of projects related to biodiversity and climate change among a host of stakeholders from Quebec, Canada and abroad hailing from the scientific, cultural, environmental and business communities. The Hives also take into account the vision of the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity's Living in Harmony with Nature strategic plan, which aims to ensure that biodiversity is valued, conserved, restored and wisely used. Putting biodiversity to the fore means maintaining ecosystem services, sustaining a healthy planet, and delivering benefits essential for all people by 2050.

A unique concept

The idea behind the Virtual Project Hives is to bring together multiple groups of 6 to 11 people wishing to share their projects related to biodiversity, and to help enrich those of others. Project hives rely on our collective intelligence to pool diversified knowledge, expertise and resources in order to launch projects of all sizes swiftly, and take them to the next level.

Essential themes

Virtual Project Hives host projects that fall within the framework of the seven main themes identified by the Secretariat of the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (SCDB):

 

Sustainable cities
Large-scale greening of urban areas, making space for nature within built landscapes, improving the health and quality of life for citizens and reducing the footprint of cities on surrounding and distant ecosystems as well as global climate

 

Sustainable food
A transition to healthier diets that include more moderate consumption of meat, promote a greater emphasis on plant-based foods, and dramatically cuts waste in food supply chains

 

Land and forests
Moving to a situation in which maintaining and improving food security no longer involves the large-scale conversion of forests and other ecosystems to agricultural land

 

Sustainable climate action
Accelerating action to reduce the scale of climate change by favouring nature based solutions that simultaneously limit greenhouse gas emissions, enhance carbon storage and provide positive benefits for biodiversity along with other sustainable development goals

 

Sustainable agriculture
A global shift in the design of agricultural systems to make most efficient use of land and water while minimizing negative impacts on natural resources and biodiversity

 

Fresh water
An integrated approach for urgent recovery and better management of freshwater systems, guaranteeing the river flows required by nature and people, improving water quality, protecting critical habitats, controlling invasive species and safeguarding connectivity

 

Sustainable fisheries
A shift in the management of global fishing such that marine and inland water ecosystems are protected and restored, food security is maintained and profits from fishing are protected into the long term

Next steps

A call for projects (by invitation only) will enable the first Project Hives to be tested between August and December 2020. Following a positive assessment of this pilot phase, Espace pour la vie and the Secretariat of the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (SCDB) will open the process to the general public.

Examples of Espace pour la vie projects to come out of Project Hives

    • The Biodiversity Challenge
      To counter the nature deficit and document biodiversity for research and educational purposes, this participatory science project aims to encourage people to share their observations of the biodiversity that surrounds them and to document their “spaces for life”: their backyards, their parks, their green spaces.
    • Starry Sky Oasis
      In order to combat light pollution and encourage reconnection with our celestial heritage, this participatory science initiative will enable us to regain possession of our starry sky and its biodiversity, so that it may be protected and studied, and so that it may continue to bring wonder.
    • The Phytoremediation Garden
      The purpose of this project is to rehabilitate and decontaminate abandoned sites using plants capable of absorbing or degrading soil pollutants. Phytoremediation gardens can become spaces dedicated to the production of bioproducts and support targeted urban agriculture.
    • The Green Lane
      A joint initiative of Espace pour la vie, major parks and several boroughs of the City of Montreal, the Green Lane aims to create an urban pathway where all species can cohabit and where significant actions will be taken to fight against climate change. This lane will urge us to rethink our ways of living, of occupying space and of coming together by engaging artists, entrepreneurs, scientists and citizens in the design process.

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