The speed of urbanisation on our planet is breath-taking. The UN estimated in 2015 that 60% of the urban areas that would exist by 2030 had yet to be built. The UK will contribute to this, with our population of 65.6 million in 2016 expected to rise to 69.2 million by 2026.
The UN accordingly published their New Urban Agenda (NUA) at the end of 2016. The NUA represented a shared vision for a better and more resilient future – one in which all people have equal rights and access to the benefits and opportunities that cities can offer, and in which the international community reconsiders the urban systems and physical form of our urban spaces to achieve this
The NUA also acknowledged the critical role that urban forestry / urban greening would play in this and, as a result, the first World Forum on Urban Forests took place in Mantova, Italy at the end of 2017. The vision we promoted in Mantova was one of communities where urban and peri-urban forests are recognised for the wide range of benefits they provide, and that trees and green spaces are viewed as Critical Infrastructure, like utilities and transportation, and thus are a strategic component of the landscape.
This seminar will consider these issues, as well as pursuing the fact that trees and urban forestry benefit all of us by making our communities greener, healthier, happier, cooler, wilder, cleaner, wealthier and safer. Each of these aspects will be considered in detail.