The benefits of nature
However, greater interaction between humans and their environment has been one of the most positive responses to the pandemic from a mental health perspective. Many of us who were lucky enough to live in places where lockdown restrictions still allowed outdoor activities turned to walking and outdoor exercising, enjoying the view of beautiful rivers, urban green spaces, and forests, all while conforming to the regulations on physical distance and group size.
As we respond to the pandemic, the use of these spaces to enhance well-being can not be ignored. Research has long proven that access to urban green spaces, such as parks and lakes, has a beneficial effect on health, usually attributed to improved air quality, increased physical activity, social cohesion, and reduced stress. It has also been shown that contact with nature helps us better recover from stress.
Greening cities not only encourage human health but also deliver a wide variety of other benefits: it is economical, helps to reduce the heat island effect in times of rising high temperatures, and enhances air quality. Green areas will also lead to a reduction in flood risk by allowing more water to enter the soil and thereby reducing the amount of surplus water during rainstorms. In the end, urban green will establish new habitats for plant and animal species.