Supporting the UK government’s world leading climate change target to cut emissions by 78% by 2035, the National Parks have teamed up with global impact firm Palladium to help find £239 million to fund vital restoration work over the next decade for some of the world’s most breath-taking natural landscapes.
This ground-breaking new partnership aligns with the urgent need to support UK nature as part of the response to climate change.
In the run-up to COP26 in November, this collaboration aims to unlock one of the UK’s biggest environmental challenges – creating a sustainable funding model for nature restoration at scale. The National Parks have the knowledge and expertise to develop and deliver conservation and restoration projects on the ground, but to date have struggled to raise the necessary funding.
Palladium, which designs sustainable business models in the Amazon and around the world, is partnering with the National Parks on innovative ways of securing much-needed private and public finance for repairing damaged peatlands and grasslands, woodland planting and management, and habitat creation.
The UK has 15 National Parks – 10 in England, three in Wales and two in Scotland. They are designated as protected landscapes because of their special qualities. The parks offer stunning natural beauty, varied wildlife, and fascinating cultural heritage. Through monetising ecosystem services the partnership will restore nature across the parks, support biodiversity, mitigate climate change, reduce flood risk downstream, improve water quality, and support local job creation.
Gordon Watson, CEO of Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park and current UK lead for National Parks, said: “Our collaboration with Palladium is enabling the UK’s National Parks to shape and strengthen how we can solve some of today’s most pressing environmental challenges. Restoring our landscapes at scale will reduce CO2, mitigate flood risks, enhance biodiversity and help rural economies. We’re excited by the progress we’re already making together with Palladium and plan to announce more in the run up to COP26.”
Christopher Hirst, Palladium Managing Director and CEO, said: “Our partnership with National Parks offers us an exciting opportunity to take our decades of experience working with businesses, government and civil society to design business models that can restore and generate value from nature, and apply them in the UK at a scale that can really make a difference. We are excited to bring lessons from tropical programmes such as Partnerships for Forests (P4F), which has supported 67 sustainable forest business models to date and secured over £250 million of new private investment, while placing over 1 million hectares of land under sustainable use.”
The collaboration between Palladium and National Parks has already generated a range of nature restoration financing pilot projects which have been submitted to funders for support. These pilots will test new models for the delivery of nature-based solutions in different National Parks by generating revenues from ecosystem services such as carbon sequestration, biodiversity gain and water services.
Conversations are taking place with a diverse number of companies interested in getting involved to support this new approach to nature restoration. Summer 2021 will see further consultations with impact investors and companies with announcements on the next stage of development in the run-up to COP26.