The DC Environmental Network (DCEN) hosted a presentation and discussion on the Biophilic Cities Initiative on Oct. 2nd in preparation for launching a Biophilic Cities project in the District. This opening event, featuring Prof. Tim Beatley and network members Stella Tarnay and Megan Draheim, introduced the concept of biophilic cities to local environmental leaders, many of whom are already working to protect and bring nature into the nation’s capital. Representatives from organizations including City Wildlife, the Humane Society, Casey Trees, National Geographic, American Bird Conservancy, Friends of the Earth, the Songbird Project, DC Greenworks, the Alice Ferguson Foundation, the Sierra Club and the Anacostia Watershed Society were among those who took part in the conversation, as well as several universities and funding organizations.

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Biophilic Cities Network Members Megan Draheim and Stella Tarnay moderate the Biophilic DC event.

Washington D.C. is in many ways already a nature-rich city, but event participants discussed ways in which Biophilic Cities principles might be strengthened and expanded. For example, the city’s active sustainability and resilience initiatives can benefit from incorporating a biophilic perspective. Another example that came up repeatedly was the unequal access to nature among residents in the District’s different neighborhoods. The need for protecting what nature already exists in D.C. as the city grows was also noted. DCEN Executive Director Chris Weiss, Stella, Megan and others are forming a working group to consider a Biophilic DC resolution to put before the City Council.

For more information and to view the presentations, check out the DC Environmental Network Website: http://www.dcen.net/biophilic-dc-report-wvideo-campaign-meeting-info/

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Tim Beatley giving a talk to Biophilic DC attendees.