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Requesting a Resilient Recovery

An Open Letter To Boris Johnson

Leap were proud to be amongst over sixty businesses, environmental organisations, youth leaders and celebrities who signed an open letter that was delivered to the British Prime Minister on Friday May 8th. It urged the government to put nature and climate at the heart of decisions for the recovery effort, for healthy communities and a resilient economy.

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“The economic recovery from this global health crisis must put the restoration of nature at its heart – because that is the only way we can continue to power our human endeavour sustainably. If nature is protected, we are protected. This letter asks the UK government to seize the opportunity to create something better out of this moment in history and establish a new normal: a climate-safe, nature-rich, healthy world for all.” – Richard Walker, Managing Director, Iceland Foods

Boris Johnson unveiled the government’s roadmap to exit COVID-19 lockdown and restart the economy on Sunday, 10 May. In anticipation of this, the letter’s signatories called on the Prime Minister to adopt four principles to enable a sustainable economic recovery for people and planet:

  • Create a more resilient economy by investing in the infrastructure, technology and skills to generate thousands of new jobs that directly contribute to a climate-safe future – and exclude polluting industries from help without a proper climate plan.
  • Increase access to wild spaces for everyone through restoring nature and oceans, incentivising walking and cycling, and supporting sustainable food, farming and fishing.
  • Strengthen nature’s protections by ensuring the swift passage of environmental legislation – and introduce targets in law across the UK for the restoration of nature on a massive scale.
  • Lead the world in building back better for people, climate and nature by bringing global leaders together to plan for a green and sustainable recovery in the run-up to the vital United Nations climate conference and biodiversity conferences next year.

The potential for cross-sector collaboration has been highlighted during this crisis. Every signatory to this letter has offered their expertise and support to help the Government find solutions as we rebuild and recover together, and welcomes the opportunity to discuss the next steps.

“Right now, the nation’s attention is rightly focused on dealing with the immediate and profound impact of Covid-19 on health, social fabric and livelihoods. But as governments around the world turn their thoughts to economic recovery, their plans must respond to what the lockdown has clearly shown; that people want and need access to nature-rich green spaces near where they live. This has to be a priority. Green infrastructure and scaling up renewables makes environmental and economic sense, creating jobs and an economy that are fit for the future. If we think green, we can create a win-win for the economy, for people and for the natural world.” – Hilary McGrady, Director-General at the National Trust

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We are proud as co-signatories to stand alongside organisations including Greenpeace, Woodland Trust, The Wildlife Trusts, Surfers Against Sewage, Iceland Foods, UK Youth 4 Nature, Ben and Jerry’s, Toast Ale, Good Energy, Triodos Bank and Keep Britain Tidy. A full list of signatories can be found here. In addition to CEOs of these businesses and charities, influential supporters adding their name to the letter include Chris Packham, Kevin McCloud, Deborah Meaden and Jerome Flynn. Businesses and environmental leaders will continue to work together to ensure that the recovery builds a healthier future for all.

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