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Join the New Forest Climate and Nature Challenge!

Join the New Forest Climate and Nature Challenge!

PUBLISHED ON: 28 OCTOBER 2021

The New Forest National Park Authority is calling on people and community groups to join them in the New Forest Climate and Nature Challenge.

The NFNPA declared a climate and nature emergency in January 2020 and has committed to work with partners and communities to ensure the National Park is ‘net zero with nature’ by 2050.

As the United Nations COP26 summit is held over the next two weeks in Glasgow, the NFNPA is inviting people to sign up to the Challenge and take a pledge to make small lifestyle changes which can have a big impact.

The COP26 summit is seen as critical because it’s the first time when countries must set out more ambitious goals for ending their contribution to climate change under the 2015 Paris Agreement.

New Forest National Park Authority Chair Prof Gavin Parker said: ‘Climate change and its effects is the greatest long-term challenge for the National Park.

‘The impact of climate change on the New Forest is likely to be wide-reaching, with warmer, wetter winters, hotter, drier summers, rising sea levels and an increasing frequency of extreme weather events; the effects of which are already being seen.

‘This will have significant detrimental effects for our wildlife, local livelihoods and human health unless addressed.

‘However we can all make a difference. There are over 35,000 people living in the National Park and nearly 180,000 living in New Forest District. Imagine if everyone gardened for wildlife for example, were more careful about what we put down our sinks to protect our waterways, or shopped locally to reduce travel, food miles and support the local landscape and economy. Taking a few steps, no matter how small, can all add up to help make a positive impact on the environment.’

Mary DeBoos, Chair of the Board of Ringwood Actions for Climate Emergency (RACE), said: ‘We have seen so many people in the area taking steps to reduce their carbon footprint and improve the environment for wildlife, from planting trees to cycling or walking to creating hedgehog highways. If we individually take a series of small steps then collectively we can make a big difference. ‘

Join us

  • Take the Climate and Nature Challenge pledge on the National Park website and sign up for tricks and tips about how to live more sustainably in the New Forest – newforestnpa.gov.uk/pledge.
  • Keep an eye out for the next Awakening Festival in February – last year over 800,000 saw Awakening Festival climate change information online and thousands joined our first virtual festival of 28 events. Email communications@newforestnpa.gov.uk if you would like to run an event in the 2022 festival
  • Apply for some funding for your climate and nature project through the National Park Sustainable Communities Fund
  • Join one of the many community groups across the Forest that are taking action to help tackle climate change and help nature
  • Find out what the National Park Authority and partners are doing about the climate and nature crises.
  • Understand your carbon emissions so you can take impactful action – take the quiz using the WWF Footprint Calculator.

For details about how you can join the New Forest Climate and Nature Challenge, visit www.newforestnpa.gov.uk/pledge.

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