This week the world’s biggest wildlife conservation organisation, Worldwide Fund For Nature (WWF) published Living Planet Report - 2018: Aiming Higher, adding to the catalogue of evidence that globally, wildlife is disappearing at a faster rate than ever before – the latest Living Planet Index showing a 60% fall in just over 40 years.
The report stresses the need for urgent action, not just to secure a future for wildlife, but also because our day-to-day lives, our health and livelihoods depend on a healthy planet. In short, we need to re-build the web of life that sustains us all. It also identifies two key issues that have led to the continued decline of biodiversity:
- For too long we have taken nature for granted, and this needs to stop
- We can no longer ignore the impact of current unsustainable production models and wasteful lifestyles.
This is a familiar call that has underpinned the work of the environmental movement for many decades. So, might this be the moment when our leaders recognise that the planet - and mankind - really are at a crossroads? Might we be on the cusp of real, effective and sustainable change at global level? If so, how do we respond at UK level and at local level in Worcestershire?
The current surge of legislation by our own government, prompted by Brexit, provides an opportunity for transformational change. The Agriculture Bill is proceeding through parliament, the Fisheries Bill was announced last week and the Environment Bill is due to be published very shortly.
Conservation organisations, including The Wildlife Trusts, have been working hard to influence the drafting of these bills and now our Wilder Future Campaign has been launched to ensure that the Environment Act is as far-reaching and ambitious as possible.
Everyone can join the Campaign, the first phase of which is a call for people to make an appointment with their MP and talk about the need for a Nature Recovery Network. If you are willing to do so, please check out the information on our Wilder Future pages.
I will be contacting each of our MPs in the next few weeks asking to meet them at conservation projects in their constituencies. The focus of these meetings will be to get the MPs to commit to the Greener UK MPs’ Charter for the Environment and especially the need for a Nature Recovery Network.
Could this be the moment for a new deal for nature and for people?