COP15 | SZ bestowed title of 'Biodiversity Charming City'

Writer: Wang Jingli  |  Editor: Zhang Chanwen  |  From: Shenzhen Daily  |  Updated: 2022-12-15

Shenzhen won the title of “Biodiversity Charming City” given by ICLEI-Local Governments for Sustainability, a global network of over more than 2,500 local and regional governments committed to sustainable development, at the 7th Summit for Subnational Governments & Cities, on Tuesday local time in Montreal, Canada. It is a parallel event to the 15th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP15) to the U.N. Convention on Biological Diversity.

The selection for the honor took the Singapore Index on Cities’ Biodiversity into consideration, recommended by the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity. A total of six Chinese cities won the title.

A scene at the 7th Summit for Subnational Governments & Cities held in Montreal, Canada. DT News

Wen Zhong, deputy director of the Shenzhen Municipal Ecology and Environment Bureau, shared how the city balances the economic development and ecological protection at the summit Monday.

“In 2005, half of Shenzhen’s landmass was included into ecological conservation ‘red lines,’ which should not be crossed. The city’s forest coverage rate now is 39%,” Wen said. He added that the city’s national nature reserve, Shenzhen Bay Mangrove Wetland in downtown, is the stopover for about 100,000 migratory birds flying between Asia and Australia yearly.

In addition, Shenzhen has built 38 nature education centers and 22 nature schools. These centers and schools conduct nature education activities each year to contribute to the city’s biodiversity conservation, according to Wen.

Participants pose for a group photo before a walk race around the Futian Mangrove Ecological Park to promote public engagement in biodiversity conservation. Shenzhen Special Zone Daily

Shenzhen has also been approved to officially join in CitiesWithNature, a global partnership initiative that strengthens collective action and impact to protect biodiversity and reconnect urban communities with nature, according to the summit.

An event was held yesterday in Longhua District to mark the city winning the two honors.

Zhang Hua, vice mayor of Shenzhen, said at the event that the two honors represent the international community’s recognition of the city’s achievements in biodiversity conservation, which will help Shenzhen and the country to contribute more to global biodiversity conservation.

Also yesterday, a walk race was held around the Futian Mangrove Ecological Park to promote public engagement in biodiversity conservation.

Over the years, Shenzhen has adhered to the green development concept to enhance its ecological environment conservation. The city aims to become a pioneer in sustainable human development and will strengthen cooperation and exchanges with other cities around the world to explore the best ways to protect biodiversity, according to the Shenzhen Municipal Ecology and Environment Bureau.