This summer, as temperatures have soared across Europe, India, Egypt and many other places, the first reaction of those with access to cooling has often been to crank up the air conditioning.
While this brings short-term relief, it isn’t a feasible long-term solution on a warming planet. The increase in air conditioning, and other cooling, brings with it a huge surge in power demand. This, in turn, drives climate change and even higher temperatures.
But it doesn’t have to be that way, as Colombia’s second-largest city, Medellín, is showing by embracing nature-based solutions. Nature-based Solutions are defined by the International Union for Conservation of Nature as “actions to protect, sustainably manage, and restore natural or modified ecosystems, that address societal challenges effectively and adaptively, simultaneously providing human well-being and biodiversity benefits”.