IGNITION is a ground-breaking project that aims to develop innovative financing solutions for investment in Greater Manchester’s natural environment. This investment will help to build the city region’s ability to adapt to the increasingly extreme impacts of climate change.

Working with nature, solutions such as rain gardens, street trees, green roofs and walls and development of green spaces can help to tackle socio-environmental challenges including an increase in flooding events, water security, air quality, biodiversity and human health and wellbeing.

This project, backed by €4.5 million from the EU’s Urban Innovation Actions (UIA) initiative, brings together 12 partners from local government, universities, NGOs and business. The aim is to develop the first model of its kind that enables major investment in large-scale environmental projects which can increase climate resilience.

Project milestones

The project will run until October 2021 and will hit several milestones along the way:

  • October 2019: Version 1 of the city-scale nature-based solutions project pipeline process will be complete, with phase 1 of deliverable set of projects identified.
  • April 2020: Funding models and finance mechanisms to deliver phase 1 of the Greater Manchester nature-based solutions pipeline will be established.
  • July 2020: An evidence base compiling research findings on performance and potential economic, environmental and social returns from installing green infrastructure.
  • April-October 2021: Greater Manchester governance and delivery frameworks will be set up with the delivery vehicle for phase 1 of pipeline procured and contracts for funding and delivery signed.
  • October 2021: Nature-Based Innovation Centre on the University of Salford campus will be installed and matured in its role as a visible demonstrator and living test lab of the urban green infrastructure approach to combating climate change.

The value of nature-based solutions

Green and blue infrastructure helps to tackle a variety of urban climate-related challenges including flooding, drought and heat waves as well as improving air quality, biodiversity, productivity, health and well-being.

Evidence of the performance and potential economic, environmental and social benefits of installing green infrastructure is central to the development of robust business case for investment in nature-based solutions.

This IGNITION evidence base acts as a central evidence repository of existing and emerging evidence. The evidence base currently covers the multiple-benefits of:

  • green walls
  • street trees
  • urban green space
  • green roofs
  • sustainable drainage systems (SuDS).

The IGNITION nature-based solutions evidence base and supporting documents are available to download below:

The evidence database

These files may not be suitable for users of assistive technologies. To request an accessible format please send an email to:  pmo.ignition@manchesterfire.gov.uk

Green walls evidence database (XLSX)

Green roofs evidence database (XLSX)

SuDS evidence database (XLSX)

Green spaces evidence database (XLSX)

Street trees evidence database (XLSX)

Guide, methodology, report and webinar

User Guide - IGNITION Nature-Based Solutions Evidence Base (PDF)

IGNITION Nature-based Solutions Evidence Base Headline Findings Report July 2020 (PDF)

Evidence Review Methodology - IGNITION Nature-Based Solutions Evidence Base (PDF)

Webinar: How to use the IGNITION Nature-Based Solutions Evidence Base (opens in a new tab)

Business Report: The Benefits of Nature-Based Solutions For Business and Society (opens in a new tab)


BITC (opens in a new tab)

City of Trees (opens in a new tab)

Environment Agency (opens in a new tab)

Groundwork (opens in a new tab)

Manchester City Council (opens in a new tab)

Royal Horticultural Society (opens in a new tab)

Salford City Council (opens in a new tab)

UKGBC (opens in a new tab)

United Utilities (opens in a new tab)

University of Manchester (opens in a new tab)

University of Salford (opens in a new tab)

Get involved

Email greencity@greatermanchester-ca.gov.uk

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