Thank you for contacting me about nature.
Biodiversity loss is a global problem that needs a global solution. I welcome that at COP15, the UN biodiversity summit held in Canada, a new deal to protect nature was agreed by almost 200 countries. The Global Biodiversity Framework (GBF) includes a commitment to halt and reverse biodiversity loss by 2030 and to protect 30 per cent of land and oceans by 2030. The GBF also commits to ending human-induced extinctions of known threatened species.
The UK played a leading role in the negotiations, building on the UK’s COP and G7 presidencies, including the Leaders Pledge for Nature. This commits world leaders to taking action to drive sustainable food production, end the illegal wildlife trade and tackle climate change. At the recent meeting of Climate and Environment Ministers of the G7, members committed to the swift implementation of the GBF, as well as international climate finance to nature-based solutions.
Domestically, the Environment Act 2021 sets a legally binding target to halt the decline in species abundance by 2030. Biodiversity net gain and a strengthened biodiversity duty on public authorities will create and restore rich habitats that enable wildlife to recover and thrive, while conservation covenants will help secure habitat for the long-term.
Regarding farming, the Sustainable Farming Incentive will provide farmers with a range of paid actions to manage hedgerows for wildlife, plant nectar-rich wildflowers and manage crop pests without the use of insecticides. These incentives will make food production more resilient and efficient over the longer term while contributing towards the UK’s environmental goals on carbon, biodiversity, water quality and net zero.
Further, Countryside Stewardship Plus will reward farmers for taking coordinated action, working with neighbouring farms and landowners to support climate and nature aims. It will deliver environmental ambitions including managing floodplain meadows to reduce flood risk and improve biodiversity, restoring and maintaining peatland for carbon capture and storage, and enhancing and managing woodland to mitigate against drought.
Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.
Sally-Ann Hart MP