World must put nature restoration at centre of climate fightback

When we harm nature we harm ourselves and the world around us.

As the COP climate summit begins, the Scottish Greens have called on world leaders to put nature restoration at the heart of our climate fightback. 

Speaking in a members' debate that he led on Restoring Nature to Tackle Climate Change, the Scottish Greens climate spokesperson, Mark Ruskell MSP made a passionate case for restoring nature and the world around us.

Mr Ruskell hailed the huge impact of the £65 million Scottish Nature Restoration Fund, which is being allocated over the course of this parliamentary term and is already creating green change across our country. 

The fund is a key part of the Bute House Agreement between the Scottish Greens and the Scottish Government, which commits to restoring the natural environment for future generations. 

Focusing on the strong link between the climate and nature crises we are living through, Mr Ruskell said: “Nature is impacted not only by the exploitation of our land and seas but increasingly by climate change. 

“Through restoration projects that help nature to adapt and become more resilient to climate change, while locking up carbon and helping us adapt to flooding and extreme weather, we can tackle the twin crises together.”

This year’s State of Nature report said that “The social and ecological consequences of living in a nature-depleted country are immense. They include impacts on human health, happiness and wellbeing, alongside direct costs associated with lost and damaged ecosystem services.”

Reflecting on the report, Mr Ruskell added: “In essence, what harms nature also harms us. But that also means that if we restore nature we also restore all those lost benefits to ourselves and our communities.”

Mr Ruskell finished: “The momentum is building for nature restoration, we are seeing action in Scottish communities as the world gathers to discuss a global response to both the climate and nature crises. This is just the beginning but the fund is already creating a legacy for future generations and I look forward to seeing progress on the ground in the years to come.”