Why businesses are joining the Restore Nature Now March this weekend

Image: Luke Dray / The Woodland Trust

 Protesting to protect and restore nature is typically thought to be the domain of environmental groups.

But this isn’t the case.

On Saturday 22 June, Business Declares will bring together more than one hundred businesses to join a major march alongside thousands of other people, united in calls for politicians to take much bolder and deeper action to protect and restore nature. Broadcaster and naturalist Chris Packham is sponsoring this effort.

This march, known as the Restore Nature Now march is a peaceful, legal and family-friendly march aiming to create the biggest ever show of support for climate and nature in Central London.  It is supported by a diverse group of wildlife and environmental organisations such as the RSPB, National Trust and the Wildlife Trusts.

There are 5 specific aims for this campaign, which is demanding that UK politicians show strong domestic and global nature and climate leadership by;

  1. Providing more funding to ensure a nature-friendly farming approach
  2. Making polluters pay for the damage they do to the environment
  3. Creating more space for nature by expanding and improving protected areas and public land
  4. Putting a legal right to a healthy environment in law – ensuring clean air and water , plus access to nature for all communities
  5. Delivering fair and effective climate action that means we at least halve UK emissions by 2030.

You can read more about Restore Nature Now’s specific demands for action here: restorenaturenow.com/aims.

Why march?

The UK has long been highlighted for its poor record on ecosystem decline. The time for action is now.

  • The UK is ranked as one of the worst countries in the world for nature loss
  • The latest State of Nature report showed the UK has lost almost a fifth (19%) of wildlife populations since 1970, with one in six wildlife species at risk of extinction from Great Britain
  • In its annual progress report published in January 2024, the Office for Environmental Protection (OEP) said that ‘the Government remains largely off track to meet its environmental ambitions, and must speed up and scale up its efforts in order to achieve them’.
  • The Committee on Climate Change has analysed UK  Government action as insufficient to meet emission reduction targets, and reported that the UK is no longer seen as a climate leader.

How are businesses participating?

The business contingent of the march, amongst which supporters include brands like Triodos Bank, Café Direct, Riverford Organics, Ecology Building Society and Ecotricity, recognise that there is no business on a dead planet and businesses need to have a far greater voice when it comes to protecting nature and ecosystems.

For those wishing to join the march, the assembly point is Park Lane, 12pm on 22nd June.  From there the march will take a predetermined route through the city before ending in Parliament Square.  There will be family friendly performance art, sculptures, singing and more for added entertainment for marchers.

The march will be wheelchair-accessible and BSL-interpreted. The culmination of the march will see a central ‘rally’ in Parliament Square at around 2.30pm. This will see well-known names and faces speaking to marchers about the political and policy changes we need to see to finally turn the tide for the environment and Restore Nature Now.

For those wishing to join the business section of the march, full details can be found in this pack, a registration form can be found here and any queries can be emailed to me directly.

Ben Tolhurst is the director of Business Declares

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