Health and social benefits of living with ‘wild’ nature

In JT du Toit, N Pettorelli & SM Durant (eds), Rewilding, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, pp. 165-181

This chapter reviews evidence of the health and social benefits of living with ‘wild’ nature in cities – from viewing trees and plants from inner-city windows through to wildlife gardening or restoring a creek side habitat. The growing momentum around the globe to bring nature back into urban environments is often referred to as ‘rewilding cities’. Cities are in focus for rewilding for several reasons – not only because they’re the most dominant form of human settlement. Cities present a unique context for thinking about nature and health because of the impacts and changes brought about by people and urbanisation processes on ecosystems. Individual health and wellbeing benefits are enhanced when it comes to more active interactions with nature in cities, such as citizens contributing to wildlife gardening on public land.

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