As well as a climate crisis, our wildlife is facing a critical emergency, with 1 in 4 species in the UK now at threat of extinction.
Sheffield & Rotherham Wildlife Trust has teamed up with Rotherham Climate Action and others to create a new alliance – ‘Nature Recovery Rotherham’ – dedicated to helping restore local nature and wildlife. Today the new alliance is asking people, businesses and organisations to join us in declaring a Nature Emergency in the area.
Hundreds of individuals and dozens of organisations have already offered their support to Nature Recovery Rotherham, including Dearne Valley College, Friends of Clifton Park and Rotherham Interfaith Group. Additionally, all three local MPs for the Rotherham area — Alex Stafford, John Healey and Sarah Champion — have shown their support for the project.
We’re encouraging as many people as possible to add your voice by simply stating ‘I (or We) declare a Nature Emergency for Rotherham’ wherever you can — from social media, to posters in windows, to adding the declaration to your website or emails.
The public declaration is on Wednesday 23 March.
Our collective declaration is the first step in encouraging everybody to take action for nature in Rotherham. Future plans include wildlife gardening events, creating a Nature Emergency Action Plan and capturing data from supporters to help inform future projects.
Liz Ballard, Chief Executive of Sheffield and Rotherham Wildlife Trust, says: “Nature is in trouble – we are losing our wildlife at a faster rate than ever before. In fact, one in four species in the UK are now at threat of extinction. People, including David Attenborough, are calling this the 6th global mass extinction.
“The UK is one of the most ‘nature depleted’ countries in the world. And it’s happening right here on our doorstep in Rotherham. We rely on nature to provide us with clean air, water, food and space to enjoy and breathe. We need to declare a Nature Emergency and take action for nature’s recovery.”
Helen Francis, co-ordinator for Rotherham Climate Action and trustee of Sheffield & Rotherham Wildlife Trust, says: “It’s great to be working on Nature Recovery Rotherham as not only has it given us more focus as a group, but it also plays a major part in the climate emergency which I wasn’t aware of myself until learning more about it.
“Residents of Rotherham connect with nature in their own way and this is our opportunity, together, to ensure nature is at the forefront of our activities and decision making within Rotherham, and we hope Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council, community groups and businesses can work with us on this too.
“The impact we have seen already from residents and community groups has been amazing and we’ve only just started this journey so I’m excited for what’s to come.”
How to get involved.
Step 1: Join the declaration on Wednesday 23rd March by signing up here.
Step 2: Tell others about it. There are some useful graphics to use on your social media channels and a poster to put up in your windows here.
Step 3. Declare a Nature Emergency for Rotherham on Wednesday 23rd March.
For more information on Nature Recovery Rotherham please visit: https://www.rotherhamclimateaction.co.uk/nature-recovery
Main image: Collage of local people declaring a Nature Emergency for Rotherham.
Image 1: Dr Nicky Rivers, Living Landscape Development Manager for Sheffield & Rotherham Wildlife Trust declaring a Nature Emergency for Rotherham.
Image 2: Helen Francis, Coordinator of Rotherham Climate Action and Trustee of Sheffield & Rotherham Wildlife Trust, with Anne of SY Craftivism declaring a Nature Emergency for Rotherham.