What is green infrastructure? In our work, it refers to the natural systems that help keep drinking water clean and abundant, keep streams safe for fish and reduce our reliance on expensive “grey infrastructure” such as pipes, drains and dikes for rainwater management and flood protection. Green infrastructure can also include eco-engineering that supports and mimic natural processes.
As our climate changes, green infrastructure offers adaptability: urban trees can keep cities cooler and improve air quality in hot summers, while healthy riparian and shoreline areas can buffer flood risks. In addition, studies show that experiencing nature, even in urban settings, makes us healthier.
Implementing green infrastructure requires a multidisciplinary approach and innovative use of existing legislation, and in some cases, law reform. West Coast provides legal analysis and resources, and facilitates collaboration among policymakers and professionals, both within communities and across local boundaries.