Ecology Bill reaches its final stage in the Lords

Today, 25 January, the Ecology Bill—which would lock, in law, a holistic nature restoration target for the UK—will clear its penultimate hurdle in the House of Lords.

Commenting ahead of report stage, the Ecology Bill’s sponsor—Lord Redesdale—said:

“Today marks the report stage of the Ecology Bill in the Lords, its penultimate hurdle before it’s passed to the Commons.

What was originally introduced as the Climate and Nature Bill—which would require a science-led and people-powered climate and nature strategy—now has a laser-like focus on a holistic, apex nature target.

What we’re seeking to do with the Ecology Bill is to draw urgent attention—now—to the need to not only halt, but also reverse nature loss by 2030.”

  • The good news? ‘Halting and reversing nature loss’ is something that the UK Government has pledged to accomplish on many occasions—including most recently at the UN biodiversity summit, COP15, in Montreal.
  • Last December, nations agreed a new deal for nature—the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework—with a guiding mission to take urgent action to halt and reverse biodiversity loss by 2030.
  • With the ambition set high at COP15, and calls growing for the UK Government to make good its pledge to deliver a ‘nature positive’ future, what we need now are strong environmental targets to turn Minister’s words into action.
  • The bad news? What we currently have are targets that miss the mark—and for one of the world’s most nature-depleted nations, we must aim higher, and we must do better.

The Ecology Bill, if enacted, would set a holistic, apex nature target—standing shoulder to shoulder with the UK’s net zero goal—and ensure that nature loss is in reverse by 2030.

Zero Hour director, Dr Amy McDonnell, welcomed this stage of the Ecology Bill’s progress, saying:

“As a serious ‘nature positive’ goal, the Ecology Bill’s target would ensure that we increase the health, abundance, diversity and resilience of species, populations, habitats and ecosystems—so that by 2030, and measured against a baseline of 2020—nature is visibly and measurably on the path of recovery.

Aiming for slightly more biodiversity in 20 years’ time than the current, depleted state of nature is far from ‘world leading’. It’s an abdication of our responsibility to future generations.

We urge all those who support the Ecology Bill to stand #UnitedForNature and add their name to Zero Hour’s petition to the Prime Minister—below—urging Rishi Sunak to work to restore our shared natural world; not just manage its decline.”

Whilst Lord Redesdale continues to advance the Ecology Bill, the need for an intertwined climate and nature strategy remains as important as ever, and we—the CAN Bill campaign group, Zero Hour—have exciting plans to reintroduce the full CAN Bill in the Commons in the weeks ahead.

Read more about why we’re standing #UnitedForNature—and supporting the Ecology Bill—here.

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