LONDON, Sept. 24 (UPI) — England’s protected habitats are failing in their intended purpose of offering security to endangered wildlife, a government report says.
The country’s protected wild areas are too fragmented and too small, the report said. It called for “corridors” to be established to allow wildlife to move from one area to another, the BBC reported Friday.
Professor John Lawton, chairman of the Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution, was asked by former Environment Secretary Hilary Benn to lead a panel of experts to recommend ways to achieve a “healthy natural environment” in which plants and animals could thrive.
Presenting the findings of the report, Lawton called for a “step change in nature conservation.”
“There is compelling evidence that England’s collection of wildlife sites are generally too small and too isolated, leading to declines in many of England’s characteristic species,” he said. “With climate change, the situation is likely to get worse. This is bad news for wildlife but also bad news for us.
“The damage to nature also means our natural environment is less able to provide many of the services upon which we depend,” he said. “We need more space for nature.”
But Lawton said the panel’s findings were “not all bad news”.
“Targeted conservation efforts have turned around the fate of many species and extensive new areas of habitat have been created,” he said in the report’s foreword.
“In other words, given resources, determination and skill, we know what to do and how to do it.”
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