Yesterday (July 30) we annnounced a fund of up to £40 million to create jobs in nature recovery and conservation to kickstart the nation’s green recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.
The ‘Green Recovery Challenge Fund’ will help conservation organisations and their suppliers create up to 3,000 jobs and safeguard up to 2,000 others in areas such as protecting species, finding nature-based solutions to tackling climate change, conservation rangers and connecting people with the outdoors.
Environment Secretary George Eustice said:
Our ambitious green recovery package will deliver a steady stream of shovel-ready environmental projects, protecting nature at the same time as creating and retaining thousands of new jobs.
Many of us have become even more appreciative of nature during lockdown and our Green Recovery Challenge Fund will help charities and other organisations employ more people to work on tree-planting, nature restoration and helping the public enjoy the outdoors.
Natural England Chair Tony Juniper said:
Coronavirus has shown us even more starkly how vital access to a thriving natural environment is to everybody’s health and wellbeing. This new fund will kick start nature’s recovery by building partnerships across the country, in towns and cities and in rural areas.
It’s also an unprecedented opportunity to build new careers for people from all walks of life to create the environment we need for the future.
This green recovery funding support formed part of a wider package to boost the economy announced by Prime Minister Boris Johnson and will help “build back a greener and more beautiful Britain”.
In yesterday’s speech, the Prime Minister also re-iterated the government’s commitment to re-foresting Britain by planting 30,000 hectares (75,000 acres) of trees every year across the UK by 2025, “creating a new patchwork of woodlands to enchant and re-energise the soul”. The Government is currently consulting on a new English Tree Strategy to expand tree cover, support woodland management and increase public engagement with trees and woodlands.