A Focus On Nature

A Focus On Nature, A Vision For Nature, Issues in conservation

Response for Nature – Megan Shersby

Earlier this week, representatives from A Focus On Nature and 25 other conservation organisations attended the launch of the Response for Nature:England report.

The Response for Nature reports respond to the government’s commitment of creating a 25-year plan to restore nature and set out the key needs of nature, all of which can be read in more detail in the reports.

Response for Nature:England

  1. Include an inspiring vision for the natural environment and a sustainable economy
  2. Set goals for nature and natural capital
  3. Defend and implement the laws that conserve nature
  4. Deliver an ecological network on land and at sea
  5. Safeguard and restore species
  6. Improve the connection of people to nature, to deliver benefits for health and well-being
  7. Provide smarter financial instruments for nature
  8. Develop greener institutions and embed nature across Government
  9. Set five-year milestones with accountability to parliament
  10. Support people working together for nature

The England launch event was opened by Steve Ormerod, chairperson of RSPB council, who welcomed us all and referred back to the State of Nature report (2013), before welcoming Steve Backshall on stage. You can view some of Steve’s talk on the RSPB site, but here is one of our favourite lines from his speech:

“Young naturalists believe that they can change the world, and I believe that they’re right.”

Following Steve Backshall, and linking very nicely to the above quote, was Josie Hewitt – a representative from A Focus On Nature who spoke eloquently and passionately about her personal connection to nature and why we need to save wildlife and the natural environment for young people. She called on politicians to act now, referencing our upcoming Vision for Nature report. Josie’s speech was welcomed with much enthusiasm by all, and throughout the evening, she was approached by many to congratulate her on her speech.

The penultimate speaker was Rory Stewart MP and Minister for Environment and Rural Affairs who spoke of investing in people, heritage and nature, and need for a science-based conservation approach on which the government could act.

The final speaker was Butterfly Conservation’s CEO, Martin Warren. His speech particularly focussed on the need to act now, commentating that …

“Endless talks and debates will not help nature … so let’s get started”

Following the main speeches, there was a marketplace session with a total of 16 different talks from the different organisations involved with Response for Nature. Our Associate Director, Matt Williams, spoke about our upcoming Vision for Nature report which garnered questions from the listening CEOs and Directors of conservation organisations.

To read more about Response for Nature, and the respective reports for the different countries, visit this RSPB webpage.




Some of the Response for Nature tweets by AFON members: