Natural environment must be at the heart of Government decision-making

Monday 7th January 2013

Paul HobsonPaul Hobson

The Government must put the environment at the heart of decision-making if it is to have any hope of meeting its target to be the greenest ever.

It today used the mid-term review of the Coalition to reiterate its aim to be ‘the greenest government ever’, but The Wildlife Trusts warn that unless all Government Departments recognise the true value of nature, it’s aim will never be achieved. 

Paul Wilkinson, Head of Living Landscapes for The Wildlife Trusts, said:

“The Coalition Government has latterly been focusing on growth, while largely ignoring the key role that the natural environment plays in our prosperity.  Time and again we have heard Ministers claiming the natural environment is a barrier to growth.  If the second half of the coalition term is to make any progress towards being the ‘greenest government ever’ then this needs to stop.  The environment needs to be at the heart of all Government decision-making, not to just be an issue for Defra.”

The Government’s progress on its environmental commitments was recently assessed in the Nature Check 2012 report by Wildlife and Countryside Link, a coalition of environmental NGOs including The Wildlife Trusts.  The report found the Government achieving ‘green’ on just two of its 20 commitments.  It was judged to be failing on four (red), and making moderate, but insufficient, progress on 14 (amber).   The full report can be found here.