Government sets out nature plans ahead of COP28

The government has set out plans to boost access to nature ahead of COP28.

A new nature package includes measures to improve access to green space and connect the public with the natural world.

The package also includes launching a search for a new National Park, 24 landscape recovery projects, new forests and funding to help more children get outdoors.

The landscape recovery projects will cover over 200,000 hectares of land, including woodlands, rainforests and sustainable food production.

£2.5 million has been committed to help children experience the benefit of the outdoors.

Prime minister Rishi Sunak said: "I shared in the nation’s profound sense of anger in response to what happened at the Sycamore Gap earlier this year, but the public’s outrage fundamentally demonstrated just how much love the British people have for the natural world.  

"From Yorkshire’s historic rolling moors to ancient rainforest on the Cornish coast, we are home to many globally significant landscapes. We must do all it takes to protect these much-loved spaces and ensure that love for the natural world continues into the next generations.

"As I head to COP28, we are reasserting the UK’s leading role in promoting our iconic landscapes and keeping nature at the centre of our action to tackle climate change.”

Environment secretary Steve Barclay said: "Nature is at the foundation of food production, water security, and is critical to our economy, and our mental and physical health. It is why it is so important to deliver on our commitment to halt the decline of nature and safeguard at least 30 percent of our extraordinary landscapes.     

"Through our Environmental Improvement Plan and today’s announcement, we are creating more opportunities for people to access nature, spend time outdoors and enjoy our beautiful countryside – as well as supporting wildlife. A healthy natural environment is critical for our wellbeing, our economy and combatting climate change.”    

 

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