Berlin Urban Nature Pact

Implementation principles

Our commitment
Our commitment

We, the cities, local and regional authorities, commit to a Pact for the future of humanity as well as urban nature and biodiversity, the basis of the well-being and health of our citizens.

More info about the Pact

The Berlin Urban Nature Pact (Pact) is an initiative by a number of cities building on and partnering with the Edinburgh Process in an ongoing, comprehensive consultation process for cities, local and regional authorities around the world that are ready to lead the transition towards implementation of bold biodiversity action. The Pact seeks to halt and reverse biodiversity loss to put nature on a path to recovery for the benefit of people and the planet in cities worldwide by 2030. It builds on the 2020 Edinburgh Declaration and the 2022 Montreal Pledge, and focuses on the implementation of the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework (GBF) and renewed Plan of Action on Subnational Governments, Cities and Other Local Authorities for Biodiversity (2023-2030).

Background - A Pact by Cities for Cities

The alarming loss of biodiversity poses an imminent threat to urban environment, infrastructures, value chains, economies as well as health and well-being. Spurring the necessary transformational change globally requires immediate, bold and inspirational action on the local level. Cities, local and regional authorities already play a key role in driving local action and are uniquely positioned to step up action and do their part in reversing biodiversity loss, as demonstrated in the Edinburgh Process for Subnational and Local Governments on the development of the GBF and the renewed Plan of Action of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). 

In 2021, the City of Berlin initiated the Berlin Urban Nature Pact to be the next milestone towards the implementation of the Edinburgh Declaration, the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework and the Montreal Pledge. The final Pact sets out 6 implementation principles that translate the Edinburgh Process’ proposed Plan of Action into a sum of ambitious and measurable targets of 7 overarching target areas, which signatories will state and report on in the CBD-recognized CitiesWithNature Action Platform.

Principle 01:
Commitment to Action and Ambition

We commit to protect, preserve, and restore biodiversity in our cities within the target areas of the Pact. To do so, we will implement targeted and visible actions, projects, and processes until 2030, which aim to achieve the set targets or at least ensure that the conditions and measures to achieve them are established. Actions to achieve the targets are new, innovative, and ambitious to improve biodiversity in the city area. Key focus is on the use of nature-based solutions[1], which address biodiversity challenges, but also deliver synergistic benefits for climate change mitigation and adaptation as well as for human health and well-being.

We will act as frontrunners and multipliers and will commit to the highest possible level of ambition for any given target within our jurisdictions. To signify and celebrate commitment to action, we will ensure the Pact is signed by the Mayor and create visibility of the Pact.

We consider the Pact an implementation alliance among committed cities worldwide.

[1]  We apply the United Nations Environment Assembly’s  definition to Nature-based Solutions (March 2022): Nature-based Solutions are ‘actions to protect, conserve, restore, sustainably use and manage natural or modified terrestrial, freshwater, coastal and marine ecosystems, which address social, economic and environmental challenges effectively and adaptively, while simultaneously providing human well-being, ecosystem services and resilience and biodiversity benefits.’ Further information: UNEP IUCN

Principle 02:
Align with and Enhance Policy, Governance, Financing & Funding Frameworks

We will align Pact targets with local, regional, and national policy frameworks and create supporting policy, governance, financing and funding structures to implement Pact targets and protect, promote, and restore biodiversity in our cities. We will commit to work with the relevant level of local government in our urban area, from the greater metropolis to the regional governments, to reach the targets of the Pact at the most relevant scale, considering our local conditions and constraints.

More specifically, we will develop or update relevant policies, which support urban biodiversity and green infrastructure that integrate and effectively mainstream nature-based solutions as a key priority across municipal departments, urban planning, the private sector, and businesses to increase economic resilience in our cities and regions.

We will intensify the exchange and coordination across departments and sectors within the city administration to mainstream and implement the targets. We will commit to provide effective incentives to ensure positive outcomes, such as public funding programmes for local initiatives or public-private partnerships. In addition, public procurement will be used to promote and implement targets where useful.

Principle 03:
Stepwise Implementation of the Pact Action Plan with SMART Targets

We will select at least 15 of the 28 SMART targets in accordance with our respective circumstances, priorities and capabilities, and outline a pathway on how to reach the targets by 2030. We will identify how to operationalize the Pact commitments, accounting for local conditions and frameworks by defining specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART) implementation steps with a practical Action Plan. The Action Plan will clearly delineate the status quo (baseline: 2020) and selected targets. It will identify relevant actions, technical implementation, responsible actors, time-bound milestones, and allocated resources, including monitoring of effectiveness, to achieve the set targets by 2030. We will develop our Action Plan as agreed within one year of signing.

At the end of 2030, we will take stock of our progress in achieving the Pact’s targets with a view to potentially increasing the number of targets in each city and jointly discuss how to move forward with the Pact after 2030 to ensure that biodiversity actions continue and remain a priority.

Principle 04:
Equal and Just Co-creation with Local Initiatives and Stakeholders

The implementation of the Pact targets shall foster environment equality and justice by paying particular attention to the needs of disadvantaged, vulnerable, and marginalised groups and communities, including indigenous and local groups. Environmental equality and justice shall entail equal access to urban green spaces and biodiversity as well as education, information, and engagement opportunities.

We will foster collaboration, co-creation, and proactive partnerships for implementation of the Pact targets. We will work with relevant stakeholders, such as local communities, indigenous people, women, youth, civil society, and NGOs as well as partners from the business, education, policy, and science sectors. Active co-creation focuses on proactive, speedy implementation of the Pact targets in a timely and practical manner until 2030.

Principle 05:
Capacity Building and Collaboration of Cities

We consider cities as valuable knowledge hubs regarding opportunities and challenges for the protection, promotion, and restoration of urban biodiversity. To benefit from this knowledge and inspire each other, we will share knowledge, good practices and lessons learned, initiate and implement process-oriented actions and pilot projects, and make this knowledge accessible to all interested cities. The Pact Secretariat will support and facilitate this process.

We will meet once a year (online or in-person). The meetings will be hosted by different Pact Signatories and contribute to achieve our goals on capacity building and collaboration. Building on our demands and interests, we will organise webinars and dialogues and prepare guidance documents to allow for exchanges and discussions on challenges and solutions, as well as build capacity between the cities and within each city.

Principle 06:
Monitoring and Report Progress

We will report on our progress towards the respective Pact targets at the annual Pact meetings (for example, on CitiesWithNature Action Platform as a contribution to UN CBD). This process will be facilitated by a joint reporting protocol. Reporting will encompass, for example, links to reports on progress on the Pact implementation; overview of biodiversity and biodiversity action in cities; and information on engagement activities.

CitiesWithNature Action Platform

The Pact Signatory Cities will state and track the progress towards their Pact commitments on the CitiesWithNature Action Platform, setting inspiring examples of bold action for other cities to follow. CitiesWithNature is a unique initiative that recognizes and enhances the value of nature in and around cities across the world. Its Action Platform is closely tied to the engagement of cities and regions in the CBD process and is recognized by the CBD in the Plan of Action on Cities and Other Local Authorities for Biodiversity (2023-2030), as the place where cities will monitor and report on their voluntary commitments to national and global biodiversity targets.


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