22nd February 2022

Nature For Everyone campaign – please sign and share the petition

Composite of bat flight (c) Patrick Keiller

Well managed green spaces are good for people and wildlife, including bats. Everyone enjoys being out in nature in our own unique way, whether that is doing exercise, reading a book on a park bench or taking part in the National Bat Monitoring Programme as a volunteer citizen scientist. Being in nature is important and is good for our health as well as providing vital habitats or wildlife corridors for bats and other species.

The sights and sounds of nature are known to reduce stress and anxiety and can even lower our blood pressure. This can include activities such as watching bat acrobatics in the night sky as they chase insects, the bird morning chorus, the crunch of leaves underfoot, the bubbling of a spring or simply looking at some trees, they all have a positive impact.

The importance of nature to our physical and mental wellbeing has never been clearer than during the pandemic. For those of us lucky enough to have nature near our homes, our natural spaces proved an invaluable respite, and an important place for socialising and exercising in lockdown. But the COVID crisis also highlighted the inequalities in access to nature as never before with millions of people unable to access natural spaces locally.

One in three people don’t have nature near their home, with the poorest communities and people of colour twice as likely to live in nature-deprived areas. Many existing sites are in poor condition or at risk from development. And many are not easily accessible for those with mobility issues or disabilities or those facing wider societal barriers.

This lack of, and deterioration in, our public natural spaces means thousands of communities are missing out on the joys and health benefits of access to nature. This in turn impacts the wildlife. A huge local authority funding gap is largely to blame, with an estimated £190 million lost from local authority parks budgets alone since 2016.

That’s why we’ve joined with more than 60 nature, health, planning and equality organisations to demand ‘a legal right to nature’ in upcoming Levelling Up legislation. Take a look at the Nature For Everyone campaign, please sign and share with family, friends and colleagues.

We’re asking the government to put a requirement in law for developers and public bodies to provide access to nature-rich green and blue spaces for everyone, and for the government to provide the funding to deliver this.

The Government has promised that its “levelling up” agenda – will create equal opportunity and quality of life for everyone around the country. But this can only succeed if it includes levelling up access to nature.

Help us to hold Government to its promises, add your name to our petition to demand #NatureForEveryone. TO SIGN THE PETITION CLICK HERE

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