Eastern Pondhawk Dragonfly © Claire Bennett
Biodiversity Action Plan
Conservation partners and the City of Hamilton are developing a Biodiversity Action Plan to enhance and manage biodiversity in our city. Led by the Hamilton Naturalists’ Club, the partners are developing a local, custom plan to ensure a bright future for the many residents and visitors of Hamilton and surrounding areas.
What is biodiversity?
Biodiversity is the variety of life on Earth. It includes all living things and the ways they interact with each other and their environment. Simply put, biodiversity is life. Biodiversity is about connection. All species, including humans, depend on each other to survive. We depend, directly and indirectly, on biodiversity for clean air, water, food, and amazing outdoor experiences. Conserving and restoring Hamilton’s biodiversity is important because healthy ecosystems sustain healthy people and a healthy economy. Hamilton is part of a biodiversity hotspot that includes many different habitats which support hundreds of different species including birds, fish, plants, butterflies and mammals.
Why does it matter to you?
Alarmingly, along with the climate crisis, our planet is going through a biodiversity crisis. Species around the world are declining due to human-caused factors, including habitat loss, invasive species, pollution and climate change. In cities, where most of the world’s population will live in by 2050, it is critical that healthy biodiversity and near-urban nature be incorporated into urban planning and city building. Hamilton is no exception. Significant actions at the local level can benefit us at home while having a provincial, national and international impact as well. Cities like Toronto, Edmonton, Guelph, and Montreal and are leading the way with ambitious policies. The Biodiversity Action Plan will align with and compliment other conservation work happening across the city.
Key Elements of the Biodiversity Action Plan
The Biodiversity Action Plan is a city-wide, multi-stakeholder strategy that will enhance and protect Hamilton’s future generations. It will guide the protection and restoration of biodiversity through a set of proposed actions.
The BAP contains actions related to policy, regulatory and on-the-ground programs across multiple organizations. The Biodiversity Action Plan will also expand on activities already taking place and fill gaps in areas where action is currently lacking.
Hamilton’s Biodiversity Action Plan aims to:
- Protect biodiversity by incorporating best practices to protect natural areas and greenspaces in policy and land management activities.
- Explore and learn about biodiversity together through partnerships and community science.
- Connect partner policies, processes, data and workflows to streamline efforts to support biodiversity in Hamilton.
- Restore biodiversity across Hamilton through nature-based stewardship activities.
There will be several opportunities to share your thoughts about the draft Biodiversity Action Plan. Stay tuned!