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Linda Thompson
Senior Environmental Planner
Department of Planning & Transportation


Environmental Commission’s Bloomington Habitat Connectivity Plan Published

Bloomington, Ind. - The Environmental Commission (EC) is excited to announce the publication of its latest report, the Bloomington Habitat Connectivity Plan (BHCP), a wide-ranging plan that details how to strengthen biodiversity throughout the City of Bloomington. The purpose of the BHCP is fourfold: to improve the level of genetic diversity among pollinators and native plant species by (1) conserving greenspace where development could occur, (2)  enhancing stable areas of greenspace, (3) expanding greenspace to promote habitat and reduce habitat fragmentation, and (4) improving habitat connectivity.

The EC engaged in geospatial analysis using data sources created by the EC and the Department of Planning & Transportation to arrive at specific recommendations. The BHCP presents five recommendations to the City of Bloomington on how it can fulfill its purpose of restoring biodiversity to a healthy, sustainable level:

Conserve habitat before, during, and after development;

Prioritize the habitat potential and permanent habitat connectivity of an area when making land use decisions;

Connect isolated areas of habitat by producing green space corridors;

Enhance habitat quality in stable areas by planting more native species and removing invasives, and;

Inform Bloomington residents of the ecological benefits of habitat connectivity and encourage resident involvement in habitat restoration.

Biodiversity decline is a worldwide problem — and Bloomington is no exception. Unchecked development threatens biodiversity and leads to a loss in the quality of ecological services that ecosystems provide, like pollination of crops and beneficial native plants, climate regulation, generation and renewal of soil and native vegetation, and much more. The Commission feels 

it is imperative that the City of Bloomington consider the essential web-of-life services plants and animals provide and adopt policies and practices that protect the diversity of species living within its borders.

The Environmental Commission advises the City of Bloomington on how its actions and policies may preserve and enhance the quality of Bloomington's environment, including the life-supporting processes that natural ecological systems provide to humans and other organisms. For more information, please visit the website.