The Ramblers today called on Government to put access to the countryside and green space, and enjoyment of walking at the heart of Government policy on climate change and the environment.
Following Environment Secretary Michael Gove’s speech at Kew Gardens on climate change and protecting the natural environment, in which he unveiled the government’s plans for an Environment Act to match the success of the Climate Change Act 2008, Vanessa Griffiths, chief executive of the Ramblers, said:
“We agree with Mr Gove’s ambitions and commitment to tackling climate change, but were disappointed that his speech today failed to mention the importance of people being able to access and enjoy nature through outdoor activities like walking.
“The next prime minister must make tackling the climate emergency and protecting nature a priority – including an Environment Bill underpinned by ambitious, legally-binding targets that hold government to account. But we need action now to enable more people to swap the car for walking, cycling and public transport.
"We need to work across national and local government to protect our green spaces and combat green poverty by bringing nature into our towns and cities. To make this happen we need to promote - and invest in - a thriving network of green, natural spaces which are connected by green routes and public transport, from the local park and local footpaths to National Parks and National Trails. This is not only good for climate and nature, but also vital for everyone's health and wellbeing.”
Find out more about our call for improved access to green spaces in our Charter for Walking Neighbourhoods.