:Members of Parliament
We met with
Ella Fishman, Jerusalem Municipality, Environmental Quality Division
From the meeting
At the meeting, Ella presented the topic of urban nature, explained what is considered urban nature, and what is considered general nature (free nature, nature that existed without man), the differences between them and whether and how there is an impact on the city. Ways to preserve urban nature were presented and what is the role of the municipality in their development and why.
The municipality and its institutions have a responsibility to ensure that they do not build on the site and also to significantly renovate the site, so that it serves many residents and the site is not destroyed. Preservation or promotion of an urban nature site is included in the outline plans, requiring negotiations with various parties in the municipality in order to preserve the areas. There is a race between preservation and construction, the municipality wants to build while the environmental quality department and other parties want to preserve, and therefore need to know how to "occupy" areas, and oppose construction plans.
Open spaces are important for mitigating the climate crisis and for our dealing with a changing climate. Open spaces, the trees in them, have the ability to absorb carbon dioxide. Urban nature is a way to connect nature to the city, to raise awareness about climate change. The urban parks help improve the local climate by cooling and reducing the heat load.
Dealing with the challenge
One of the ways to deal with the given situation is to be very active in preserving the existing nature and creating a new nature. That is, to protect the existing nature as much as possible and to take into account that it is not possible to completely cancel construction plans.
It is possible to promote a kind of local reserves or small forests inside and outside the city to make room for new construction as well. In addition, you can continue to develop the nature that is inside the city (such as on roofs, in parks, or even in schoolyards).
This way we can ensure that nature does not disappear. Humanity in general and Jerusalem in particular, is faced with population growth, something that is difficult to combat. That's why you have to think about how it is possible to save and preserve nature alongside the construction.
The committee discussed several questions. The four main questions were:
How to mitigate the damage that the city does to nature?
How to introduce urban nature services to the city?
How to preserve nature and natural sites when the population grows?
Should we develop natural areas near the city to make them accessible to the public, or rather leave them completely natural?