A National Parks England response to the publication on 27th June 2018 of CNP’s new report – Raising the bar: improving nature in our National Parks
As the report acknowledges, our National Parks are among the most beautiful and valued landscapes that contain rare wildlife and large areas often of international importance for wildlife.
We share the CNP’s ambitious desire for improvements in wildlife, as well as their recognition that one cannot consider biodiversity in isolation of other pressures and ambitions for these special areas. National Parks England specifically called for an ambitious programme of enhancements to our National Parks prior to the publication of the Government’s 25 Year Environment Plan. We are pleased that the recently announced Government review of protected landscapes will also include an examination of what more can be done for nature within our National Parks.
Enabling National Parks to work alongside the farming community to deliver more wildlife and a host of other public goods is probably the most important lever for positive change that Ministers will be making decisions on. We also hope the Government’s New Strategy for Nature will give prominence to supporting abundant and rare wildlife in our National Parks when it is published.
A more immediate issue that could lead to the loss of wildlife, barely addressed in today’s report, is the area that could come out of agri-environment schemes. We estimate over 250,000 ha of land in the English National Parks is currently within schemes that are due to expire within the next three years. This represents a very genuine and urgent risk to the maintenance of wildlife that needs to be addressed.”