The National Trust has announced plans for the UK’s biggest woodland expansion, planting 20 million trees over the next ten years.
The charity conducted a survey earlier this year which revealed that nearly two-thirds of Britons have never listened to birdsong, and less than a third say they stop to watch clouds or bees.
This research inspired their campaign to not only help to tackle the nature and climate crisis, but also to inspire and connect people to nature.
The campaign will involve planting more than 18,000 hectares of woodland, an area equivalent to one and a half times the size of Manchester, the woodland will be strategically placed in order to lock up 300,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide.
Once the project is complete, it will mean that 17% of the land that the National Trust cares for will be covered in woodland, an increase from the current 10%.
The charity has also promised to continue their work to reverse the decline in nature, such as helping to clean up the nation’s rivers, reintroducing species and repurposing land for carbon sequestration.
Hilary McGrady said: ‘It’s our 125th year and the National Trust has always been here for the benefit of everyone.
‘That’s why we are making these ambitious announcements in response to what is needed from our institution today.
‘As Europe’s biggest conservation charity, we have a responsibility to do everything we can to fight climate change, which poses the biggest threat to the places, nature and collections we care for.
‘People need nature now more than ever. If they connect with it then they look after it. And working together is the only way we can reverse the decline in wildlife and the challenges we face due to climate change.
‘For years the National Trust – its staff and volunteers – have been working to preserve and protect, to look after species in decline; to reintroduce species that we know are integral to caring for the natural world.
‘Our next chapter will be about scaling this up.
‘It will also be about helping millions of people to reconnect with nature and galvanising them to fight with determination and care, to save our common treasures.’
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