Environmental groups welcome the launch of Natural England’s Nature Recovery Network partnership today, but warn that the Government’s flagship Nature Recovery Network commitment will face critical delay or failure without additional funding.
Government funding for green recovery projects is almost 10X oversubscribed reveal new figures
The top nature charities in the country are today warning the government that a lack of investment in nature could mean delay and default on key environmental targets, including 500,000 hectares of new wildlife habitat as part of a Nature Recovery Network.
In an open letter sent to the Chancellor today, environment groups say that £1bn capital investment is needed in green projects to set nature on a path to recovery on land and at sea.
The warning comes as a Parliamentary Question from Ruth Jones MP, revealed that Defra’s £40m Green Recovery Challenge Fund, which aims to kick-start environmental renewal and create green jobs, is oversubscribed by almost £330m. Shovel-ready green projects requiring £368million of funding were submitted to the fund, almost ten times the amount of funding available.
The groups say that increasing the funding available to the Green Recovery Challenge Fund would deliver wildlife-rich habitat in every corner of the country in the next financial year. They warn that Government promises of a green recovery need to be backed up by real investment.
Natural England is today launching its Nature Recovery Network Delivery partnership. This collaboration of government, industry and environment groups aims to jointly deliver a connected and expanded network of green spaces across the country. This would help to restore nature, tackle climate change and improve people’s well-being.
Environment groups are a key part of delivering the network, but with funding having dried up in the wake of the COVID-19 crisis many of their projects which would feed into this network are unlikely to be able to go ahead.