This briefing note was originally published on UK Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology.


“This brief provides an overview of the ecosystem service contributions of urban biodiversity and green infrastructure and the challenges for improving their provision – complementing POSTnote 538 on Green Space and Health.

Human health and subjective wellbeing (emotional states and life satisfaction) can be considered the overarching outcome of optimal ecosystem service provision. Ecosystem services are the benefits provided to humans by natural systems that range from food and water to recreation and climate regulation. In urban areas, the elements of the natural environment providing ecosystem services are referred to as ‘green infrastructure’. Strategic improvement of urban geen infrastructure has been proposed as a cost effective public health measure. For a detailed overview of the evidence on urban green space and health, see POSTnote 538.

Urban green infrastructure is not just open spaces such as parks, playing fields, cemeteries, allotments, and private gardens, but also green roofs and walls, street trees and sustainable urban drainage systems (SUDs), as well as ponds, rivers and canals. However, existing urban green infrastructure in the UK has not been strategically planned to deliver ecosystem services. This brief provides an overview of the ecosystem service contributions of urban green infrastructure and the challenges for improving the provision of these services…”

Read on and download the full report at: UK Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology.