McKenna Davis, Senior Fellow at Ecologic Institute, was one of 8 experts speaking on the topic of 'strategies for urban biodiversity' during the Digital Blue Green Event hosted by the Scandinavian Green Roof Institute on 14 March 2023. In light of increasing global urbanization trends and the associated societal and environmental challenges, the event highlighted the importance of conserving biodiversity as the backbone for realizing resilient cities. Around 350 participants attended the 1-day event, broken into a morning session focused on urban biodiversity and an afternoon session on photovoltaic on green roofs / biosolar roofs.
McKenna Davis presentation was entitled 'Nature-based solutions for improved urban water management and biodiversity conservation'. She began by outlining key challenges facing urban water management, including an increasing frequency and intensity of heavy rainfall events, urban surface sealing and combined sewer overflow events. McKenna then introduced the NICHES project and its aim to rethink the status quo by deploying nature-based solutions and approaching the urban water system as a holistic Social-Ecological-Technical-System (SETS). By developing transition pathways to realise this vision, NICHES will support the mitigation of urban runoff, flooding and sewer overflow events and contribute to aquatic biodiversity protection.