Green infrastructure is more than a bioswale or a green roof or a forested corridor – it’s a different way of thinking about infrastructure. Understood as a multi-scale network of ecological features and systems that provide multiple functions and benefits, it provides a systems approach to planning and development that recognizes the value of ecosystem services and strives to integrate and enhance those ecosystem services within our built environment. Green infrastructure is not limited to a particular type of technology or feature doing a specific job; it’s the result of a wide network of institutions, organization, agencies, businesses, and citizens bringing ecosystem services back into planning and development. It’s ultimately about people and organizations making that choice. Realizing green infrastructure’s full potential requires coordination and collaboration across multiple boundaries – political, jurisdictional, agency, organizational, sectoral, disciplinary, professional, to name just a few. The most significant challenge for advancing a robust and integrated form of green infrastructure may be one of leadership and collective action.

Greening the Grey: Green Infrastructure for Sustainable Development – Institutional Analysis. (2013). Center for Leadership in Global Sustainability at Virginia Tech and National Association of Regional Councils.

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