Let’s Act for Nature together. Buglife, alongside The Wildlife Trusts, the RSPB, Butterfly Conservation, Plantlife, Bumblebee Conservation Trust and others, is calling for a Nature and Wellbeing Act in England, to create sufficient laws to bring about the revival of nature for future generations.
The 2013 State of Nature report found that 60% of UK species we know about are in decline. For the sake of our economy, our communities, our health and our wellbeing, we need to pledge towards nature’s recovery and make fundamental changes to how we value, use and interact with our natural environment.
Why do we need the Act?
Existing environmental laws have been, and remain, fundamental to protecting our natural resources, but weren’t designed to reverse their degeneration. Society requires legislation that openly does this, valuing nature in its own right and acknowledging its importance in terms of community wellbeing and health. The Act will bring nature to the forefront of the political agenda and shine a light on its importance.
How will the Act do this?
Nature in recovery
Restoring 80% of our finest wildlife havens (SSSIs) to a favourable condition by 2040 (the current figure is 37%); a 10% increase in the species watchlist indicator; and a national list of species for which there are clear duties to fulfil plans of action so that the endangered plants, fungi and animals avoid extinction and start to recover.
Nature in neighbourhoods
Mapping and creating local and national ecological networks through the planning system in order to interlink wildlife habitats and bring them back into neighbourhoods. Building on Buglife’s B-Lines initiative that has shown that it’s possible to develop a blueprint for a national network of wildlife habitat, while retaining local ownership.
Nature in walking distance
In England, the most deprived communities are 10 times less likely to live in the greenest areas. The Nature and Wellbeing Act proposes the government commits to bringing nature and thus happiness into communities by increasing the amount, accessibility and quality of natural green space in and around our settlements. The evidence shows that increasing access to nature has a range of significant health benefits for people.
Nature in schools
It is widely understood that children’s development can be positively affected by contact with nature, yet today only 21% of 8-12 year olds in England have an adequate connection to nature. The Nature and Wellbeing Act would amend Section 78 of the Education Act: to make caring for nature a key purpose of schooling.
Can I help?
Yes, together we can act for nature. Make it known to your local MP that you need nature, along with  others who have already signed the petition. Also, don’t forget to tweet your thoughts using the hashtag, #ActForNature.