Living Green Infrastructure
Since 2003, Gaia College has been offering holistic horticulture education to students all over the world. Our courses integrate essential knowledge of ecology, permaculture and organic gardening to build a solid ecological foundation for your career and/or personal life.
In this course addressed at planners, policy makers and developers we introduce and discuss the complexity and simplicity of integrated natural solutions – low impact development (LID) and living green infrastructure (GI).The Federation of Canadian Municipalities calls on a swift transition to mitigate the impacts of climate change through green infrastructure:
"Climate change is the single biggest challenge of our time. With municipalities influencing roughly half of Canada's greenhouse gas emissions, it's essential to scale up local solutions to transition to a resilient low-carbon future by 2050. Together, we can build a greener and more prosperous Canada—one community at a time." - Federation of Canadian Municipalities Report, 2023.
Great strides are being made on many fronts, but so much more can be done with a better understanding of natural ecosystem processes. No solution can be sustainable if it degrades nature’s ability to sustain itself and us.
All too often, problems are addressed in isolation along budget categories set by administrators. Truly sustainable solutions can only arise from a holistic process, involving interdepartmental collaboration and problem solving. It is not realistic – nor effective over the long term – to address urban forest pests, for instance, without giving consideration to lot sizes, construction practices, water management, pesticide use policy, and ultimately soil quality.
This course is designed to provide the knowledge and tools to assist professionals and practitioners in attaining a proficient level of competence in living green infrastructure, and for implementing these technologies and best management practices throughout the planning, constructing and maintenance phase of land development.
While there are no one-size-fits-all solutions, we hope to provide a deeper understanding of nature’s contribution to the success of human created infrastructure, and to help everyone make better and more integrated decisions for long-term benefit.
- A deeper understanding of the living components of green infrastructure
- Ecological impacts of development
- Water catchment and use
- Stormwater management
- Waste management
- Urban forestry
- Wildlife / biodiversity
- Food security
- Environment and community health