A string of major companies including banking giant Santander and outsourcing conglomerate Capita have committed to a new green funding initiative, which aims to contribute £240m to restoring and preserving all 15 of Britain’s National Parks by 2030.
Other participating companies include Gatwick Airport, Estée Lauder Companies, Southern Co-op, the National Lottery Heritage Fund, and Defra.
The funding – known as Revere – was set up by the group Palladium in collaboration with the UK’s National Parks, established with the aim of restoring natural land using private capital and supporting the National Parks’ ‘Net Zero with Nature’. This nature recovery programme identifies restoring UK National Park landscapes as crucial in combating our climate crisis.
Under Revere, restoration projects will be established throughout the UK in partnership with land managers, and a framework for ecosystem services (such as carbon credits) will be set up to create new sources of income for landowners and farmers.
“Taking effective action on climate change is urgent,” says Jose Maria Ortiz, Palladium Managing Director. “In the short term, the answer is nature, while in the long term we need innovation. In both cases, investment at scale is necessary.”
“There isn’t time for small-scale interventions anymore,” he adds. “The time is now for bold investments in nature with potential risks, because the alternative is continuing to destroy our planet.”
Pilot projects set to receive the first round of funding include peatland restoration in the Scottish Cairngorms National Park, woodland establishment in the South Downs and New Forest National Park, and habitat restoration and improvement of natural flood barriers in the North Yorkshire Moors.
Commenting on the scheme, development director of National Parks partnerships Naomi Conway said;
“As COP26 approaches, we want to remind the UK of the role that the National Parks can play in fighting the impacts of climate change and improving biodiversity. This pioneering private sector support will get us closer to achieving the scale and pace of nature restoration that the UK so urgently needs.”