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Enhancing Biodiversity Co-Benefits From Nature-Based Solutions for Adaptation in Practice

While nature-based solutions (NbS) for adaptation projects are increasingly being promoted and implemented, there is still little understanding of how such projects can achieve biodiversity co-benefits—multiple wins for both biodiversity and ecosystem functioning. Protecting and supporting biodiversity and ecosystems is important to ensure the delivery of critical ecosystem services that help communities adapt to climate change and sustain their livelihoods, such as conserving wetlands to absorb floodwaters.

To address the gap in evidence, these two case studies have been developed as a supplement to our technical brief Enhancing Biodiversity Co-Benefits From Nature-based Solutions. Through the sharing of promising practices and lessons learned, the case studies seek to inform and inspire adaptation practitioners and planners to help ensure that biodiversity co-benefits are captured throughout the lifetime of a project.

The first case study describes how civil society organizations are protecting and restoring mangroves to strengthen coastal resilience to climate change in Grenada. The second case study examines the role of biological corridors in urban areas in Costa Rica to enhance biodiversity while contributing to the development of sustainable cities and a higher quality of life.

Each case study includes an overview of the local context and climate risks, how the project adapted to climate change and integrated biodiversity in practice, and lessons learned. The case studies were developed through interviews with project implementers and by reviewing relevant reports and documents.

The report is part of a compendium of resources developed by the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) for the Nature for Climate Adaptation Initiative (NCAI), which is supported by Global Affairs Canada. In addition to the technical brief on enhancing biodiversity co-benefits from the implementation of NbS for adaptation mentioned above, the resources include an introductory guidance note that provides an overview of basic terminology and concepts behind NbS for adaptation and a report on mainstreaming gender equality and social inclusion in NbS for adaptation.