People's plan for nature

23. October 2022
People's Plan for Nature

81 per cent of Britons believe that nature is under threat and action is urgently needed to protect it. Therefore, a citizens' assembly for Conservation was held in the UK from November 2022 to February 2023. The idea: randomly selected citizens will jointly develop a plan to protect biodiversity.

Because species extinction affects everyone, anyone interested has been able to take part in an online discussion on nature conservation since September 2022. Those interested were also encouraged to organise their own citizens' talks and citizens' meetings to discuss what they think the peoples' plan for nature should look like. There were posters and guides in English and Welsh.

The questions asked were

  • What do you love about nature in the UK? What would you miss if it disappeared?
  • Imagine it’s 2050 and nature in the UK is thriving. What is different from now?
  • What exciting examples have you seen of people working together to restore and protect nature in the UK?

The nearly 30,000 online comments to these questions helped shape the citizens' assembly. This assembly brought together a randomly selected group of 100 people from across the UK between November 2022 and February 2023.

Plan with different recipients

The participants were asked to consider contributions from the online debate and listen to conservation experts. Together they developed a set of recommendations and a plan for nature conservation in the UK. The Peoples' Plan for Nature will set out how government, businesses, NGOs and communities can protect nature.

The citizens' assembly was run by participation experts from Involve and the Sortition Foundation. Other partners were 89Up and the New Citizens Project.

Meetings over four weekends

The online participation and citizens' assembly aim to ensure that the Peoples' Plan for Nature is rooted in the values, ideas and experiences of people from all parts of the country. Participants met over four weekends between November 2022 and February 2023. Two of these took place in Birmingham, the other two online.

"UK’s biggest ever conversation about the future of nature" is supported by the nature conservation organisations National Trust and WWF as well as the bird conservation organisation RSPB. The initiators of the citizen participation want to work with government, businesses, organisations and communities to implement the recommendations of the citizens' assembly after it is over. The recommendations of the citizens' assembly will be published shortly.

Read more: People's Plan for Nature