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Green Infrastructure Planning to Tackle Climate Change in Latin American Cities

Abstract

Green infrastructure (GI) offers a new perspective on the benefits of urban and peri-urban green spaces. In Latin America, the urbanization process has involved a loss of these green spaces of high environmental value. These changes have had a series of consequences on the climate of Latin American cities that have been intensified by climate change. Although the contribution of GI to urban climate regulation and to climate change mitigation and adaptation is growing in recognition, the debate has still had little influence on urban planning initiatives, with exceptions in North America and Europe. In Latin America and Africa little is known about how climate change adaptation plans incorporate the development of urban GI. This chapter explores institutional actions to develop GI as an alternative to tackle climate change in Latin American cities. A bibliographic review was conducted using the terms “green infrastructure” or “climate change.” The analysis focused on identifying: responsible institutions, objectives, and the understanding and use of the GI concept. Results indicate that GI has been recently and slowly incorporated into urban planning. This scenario suggests a growing awareness of the need to plan sustainable, green, and more prepared cities to face climate change. However, planners have not considered enough the potential contribution of GI; thus, the role of GI has not been properly identified and valued in urban planning, and planning and design efforts do not maximize the benefits of GI.

Keywords

  • Green infrastructure
  • Ecosystem services
  • Urban planning
  • Climate change adaptation and mitigation

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Vásquez, A., Giannotti, E., Galdámez, E., Velásquez, P., Devoto, C. (2019). Green Infrastructure Planning to Tackle Climate Change in Latin American Cities. In: Henríquez, C., Romero, H. (eds) Urban Climates in Latin America. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-97013-4_13

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