AU: National tour to tackle cities declining green space

A national tour tasked with tackling Australia’s decline in urban green space is heading to our major cities to gather the solutions to reverse this trend, with the first date kicking off in Adelaide (14 Oct).

The Growing the Seeds Tour is the first time in Australia a national event series, crowdsourcing expert solutions to increase urban green space, has ever been conducted.

The announcement of the tour from the 202020 Vision comes at the same time as a report published in Environmental Pollution by CSIRO Ecosystems Sciences finding if green spaces in our cities were doubled, heat wave related deaths in the elderly could be cut up nearly 30%.

The report funded by 202020 Vision partners, Horticulture Australia and the Nursery and Garden Industry Australia (NGIA), looked specifically at Melbourne but has insights relevant for many our major cities, “as we head towards summer, which is predicted to be one of our hottest on record, we know that most cities will be grappling with the ongoing issue of how to reduce temperatures and unburden themselves from urban heat island effect,” said Robert Prince, Chief Executive Officer, NGIA.

Despite the known benefits of increased green space such as, mitigating climate change, creating healthier and happier communities, and making people more productive, we also know there are a range of specific obstacles to seeing this increase, according to research by CSIRO.

Climate, health and productivity in relation to urban green space, will be addressed by the Growing the Seeds Tour in the aim of uncovering the solutions and pathways to how these issues will be overcome by 2020.

The tour will work with some of Australia's most well-known experts and leaders in urban green space from all-levels of government, business, academia and not-for-profit sectors, “Encouraging a solutions-orientated discussion between these sectors is a major aim of the tour, along with demonstrating that even though there are a wide range of variations across every state and territory we can work together to develop a national action plan to take us into next decade,” said Prince.

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