Montréal in Canada is leading the way by weaving nature into its urban fabric. The city, which hosts the Secretariat of the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), works on various initiatives to protect ecosystems, promote nature in the city and encourage residents to take part in local initiatives, as part of the city’s ecological transition.
Not only was Montréal among the pioneer cities to join CitiesWithNature, the CitiesWithNature initiative was launched in Montréal in 2018 at the ICLEI World Congress by the founding partners ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and The Nature Conservancy (TNC).
Montréal’s city profile on CitiesWithNature, introduces the city’s considerable nature initiatives and key policies, plans and projects that they have shared on their Nature Pathway.
One of these initiatives is Montréal’s shiny new insectarium that aims to connect people with nature through an innovative approach. The insectarium is the first museum in North America that provides people the opportunity to get up close to living insects as they move around freely in immersive habitats. Montréal’s Mayor, Valerie Plante, recently opened the redesigned space.
One of the iconic insects featured at the insectarium is the monarch butterfly. This eye-catching species is renowned for its long-distance migration from Canada through the USA to Mexico. Given this migration pattern, the local actions of cities and citizens matter on a global level: protecting the monarch’s habitat and its food plants throughout North America is essential for the survival of this species.
Similarly, another leading CitiesWithNature city, San Antonio in Texas, planted the North American Friendship Garden in collaboration with counterparts from Mexico and Canada. This garden includes a pollinator garden to provide a sanctuary for monarch butterflies during their international migration. Read more about this inspiring initiative.
Photos by Joshua J. Cotten on Unsplash