Rewilding Britain backs out of Summit to Sea – a symptom of a wider failure to achieve

 

Claims of eco-colonialism, rewilding as a colonial agenda, were the inevitable result of the Summit to Sea project in Wales being a deeply compromised and disingenuous proposal, a quickly stitched together set of partnerships, a lack of evidence of being able to demonstrate real benefits, a local communication and management strategy also hurriedly lumped together and out of control from the beginning, the whole founded on a complete lack of expertise, but plenty of arrogance and ignorance on the part of Rewilding Britain. I doubt it backing out of the project will avoid humiliation. It was never going to be an advance for true rewilding, but now it is just bad news, a symptom of a wider failure to achieve.

I set a challenge to Rewilding Britain four years ago, around the time of its launch - and to all of us who sought a future for wild nature in Britain - to come up with something infinitely better for its aim of facilitating the establishment of three core areas of 100,000 ha or more of rewilded land by 2030, than many of the ideas that were being touted at the time, especially the nonsense rewilding experiments that had been proposed by Paul Jepson on the back of that launch (1). I said it went to the credibility of Rewilding Britain that having a plausible view of how the three core areas were to be achieved was a priority for Rewilding Britain, and I argued that much else in terms of dissemination on ecological restoration could follow from that. I noted that while there were many ways to go about developing that plausible view, discussion about those ways had died a death, leaving a void for the unhelpful like Jepson to fill.

Truly uninspiring for any ambition for really wild land

The auguries were not good when Rewilding Britain couldn’t even agree on what a real wild area was (2,3) but there were things afoot when a large area proposal based on a location in Wales was belatedly circulated around the Advisory Group of Rewilding Britain – I say belatedly because I subsequently found out from the Director of Policy and Advice at the Country Land & Business Association that he had seen the proposal before the Advisory Group had, and so you can tell that Rewilding Britain knew to what audience it was being pitched. It was also the case that Rewilding Britain had asked the Wildland Research Institute to be a named partner for a bid to the Cambridge Conservation Initiative Collaborative Fund for Conservation, a source of money for projects that addressed a high priority biodiversity conservation issue, and bankrolled by Arcadia, a charitable fund of Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin (4). The Wildland Research Institute chose not to, despite having done various thematic mapping of the area like land ownership and use, since it was still fresh in our memory that the Advisory Group had not been told anything about the “Collaborative Rewilding Agreement” between Rewilding Britain and Rewilding Europe (5) fearful as we were of Rewilding Europe’s involvement with the bid, and that the proposal could be a slow creep towards Rewilding Europe getting a toehold in Britain with one of its rewilding areas along with its monomaniacal action of “boosting natural grazing” (6).

I felt able to reveal what had been my comments in response on the Summit to Sea proposal in Wales, and those of others of the Advisory Group, when Rewilding Britain made a preliminary announcement that it had received funding for the proposal, noting it was truly uninspiring for any ambition for really wild land (7). While the proposal asserted that there would be mechanisms in place to raise awareness and build support amongst community members (landowners, farmers, fishermen etc.) and engage them in shaping the future of the project, I noted that it ducked the need for engagement in specifically paving the way for the paradigm shift away from mainstream conservation that has to happen if there were to be core wild areas, and had then walked away from any involvement with Rewilding Britain, renaming it for myself as REFARMING Britain in recognition of its obvious ideological bent. After that, when you are not privy to information, the next best thing is to people watch through google stalking, it becoming apparent that it was likely another fund managed by Cambridge Conservation Initiative, and bankrolled by Rausing’s Arcadia, that the proposal had been submitted to - the Endangered Landscapes Programme. Why seek funding from this source, when the proposal would have to be highly tailored to meet the specific objectives of the funding stream? It made me wonder, if this was the case, whether this was the influence of the circles that Charlie Burrell of Knepp frequents, and especially how he avoided a conflict of interest in being a member of the Oversight and Selection Panel that was responsible for recommending which projects should receive major grants from the Endangered Landscapes Programme, when he was as well a trustee and an ex-Chair of Rewilding Britain? However, you get a feel for the spheres of influence involved – in this case how the interests of large land owners and money coalesce – when you see the barefaced promotion of the Knepp Group in a Times article –  an “extraordinarily exclusive group. It’s not just that they are uncommonly wealthy” and which indicates links with Rausing (8-10).

After my hunch on funding had been confirmed, I reflected earlier this year on what I could read about the aims of the Summit to Sea project (11). Given its focus on socio-economic support of rural communities in restoring “economic resilience” in what was likely to have aspects of a dumb aping of failed agri-environment funding schemes (see later) I noted that I didn’t think any of us had ever thought when we were setting up the Wildland Network around 2005 that what rewilding in Britain needed was a development-oriented organisation. It demonstrated a devastatingly low aspiration for the wild nature of Britain that would only create dismay among real wildland advocates, confusion among prospective supporters, and ammunition to those with that more development-oriented agenda. I wondered whether whoever was really driving the policy of Rewilding Britain would ever relinquish this rotten approach, of a creeping normality of meaningless rewilding that was being foisted upon us, and when the webpage and brochure for the Summit to Sea project didn’t even mention the word rewilding (12,13)?

The change in attitude to the project within the farming-connected community

It was not long before there were rumbles in the farming community in the area, which was taking against the project, bringing the admission from one of the project partners that consultations had been limited (14). This made a mockery of any assertion in the proposal document that it would raise awareness and build support amongst community members, and it seriously damaged the prospect of ever developing an overarching vision and co-managing the area with local communities, as was a commitment in the project overview (12). I commented sarcastically at the time that this was the new era of rewilding – applying for funding for a large area project, but don't tell the land users, even though they are going to have the money thrown at them for doing very little – “This hopeless nonsense is brought to you by #REFARMINGBritain in its endless degrading of rewilding” (15). A few months later, on World Environment Day 2019, the National Assembly of Wales held a short debate on rewilding Wales, the topic chosen by Assembly Member Joyce Watson who gave the background of climate change as the reason why (16). Watson noted that Rewilding Britain had brought out a report that had claimed that farm subsidy could be directed towards habitat restoration that "could cut carbon emissions to zero in Wales", but without any loss of farmland productivity. I’ll come back to that report later, but Watson name checked Summit to Sea for what this “public goods scheme” of payments for carbon sequestration might look like in Mid Wales, describing it as “managed rewilding, and not neglecting swathes of our countryside”. I have pointed out before that when people use the term “managed rewilding” it is because they want it to be a managed approach that constrains it within prescribed limits of transformation (17).

Replying to the debate Lesley Griffiths, Minister for Environment, Energy and Rural Affairs, also alluded to that term in relation to increasing the resilience of Wales's ecosystems - “We believe that rewilding, as a carefully managed process, does have the potential to be part of the solution” (16). Like Watson in her use of the term neglect, Griffiths was also disdaining non-intervention in using another value-laden term abandonment, instead imposing on rewilding a managed approach that controls the means of ecological restoration, and so constraining the outcome. This is evidence of the creeping normality of meaningless rewilding that is being foisted upon us (see above). At least Assembly Member Llyr Gruffydd was aware that all was not well with Summit to Sea, and that "more work needed to be done" to win over the land community in the project area –“I know that Summit to Sea started off badly, with many people feeling that it's something that's being done to our rural communities, rather than something that is being done jointly with them, as it should be. So, I would strike that note of caution” (17). A couple of months after that debate, the Farmers' Union of Wales called for the project to be scrapped (18) made worse when 160 Welsh farmers and local residents met in Talybont, Ceredigion, at the end of July and agreed that Rewilding Britain and its partner organisations had failed to disseminate information about their Summit to Sea plans, as well as voting to establish a committee with members from all communities in order to fight against the project in its current form (19):
“The Summit to Sea project has made no attempt to ascertain local opinion or the impact such a project might have on the rural community. There was no discussion, no consultation, no prior notice. This is not a collaboration; it feels like an attempt to override our rural community”

Ecodyfi, the local regeneration organisation for the Dyfi Valley in Mid Wales, and one of the eight project partners, became increasingly disturbed by what it saw as the change in attitude to the project within the farming-connected community, a community on which Ecodyfi largely depends for its work, and so it pulled out of the project – “We feel that in present circumstances Ecodyfi can best help the creation of a more resilient and sustainable future by being outside the project rather than by staying within it” (20,21). I commented at the time that the withdrawal of support from Ecodyfi was because it was a “dogs dinner”, a “rewilding lite” approach with zero rewilding expertise in designing wildland networks, and thus was further evidence of the ignorance in Rewilding Britain about the origins of rewilding that had evolved within The Wildlands Project and its approach to Wildlands Network Design, a process of engagement in areas where people had expressed a determination to protect their regional diversity and wanted to work with The Wildlands Project (22-24). I pointed to an article in Wild Earth that outlined the design process that included identifying important groups in the region that had to be involved, identifying and establishing an organisational structure for wildlands work, and developing a regional workplan for reserve design (25).

Equally damaging, if not more so than the withdrawal of Ecodyfi, was the motion put before Powys County Council that it “opposed the activities of Rewilding Britain in Mid Wales” and which “calls on the ‘Summit to Sea project’ to cut ties with Rewilding Britain”(26). The motion received 41 votes for, none against and one abstention (27). Then, over a week ago, eleven days after that vote, Rewilding Britain announced that it was pulling out of Summit to Sea, and leaving it to the remaining partners to carry on with the project (28,29). It was explained away as a “change in governance” that followed feedback from community members and farmers’ unions who were unhappy with Rewilding Britain’s involvement. In what seems to me to be a recognition that it had been caught out wanting in experience in leading a project of this type, it rationalised its failures by asserting that its role as an organisation was to “support projects in getting off the ground”, that it only intended a short term leadership involvement, and that it would “continue to focus on its role as a small, agile catalyst organisation, embarking on new ventures to restore nature and tackle climate breakdown” - see later for the evidence on the latter. The farming and local press had a field day on the withdrawal, one calling it a desertion (ie. 30-33). With hindsight, I look back now with squirmy fascination at the news release put out by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation around the time that Rewilding Britain secured funding for Summit to Sea, and in which it said that it was "proud of Rewilding Britain’s success and excited about the project’s potential to improve biodiversity on land and at sea" (34). The Foundation had bankrolled Rewilding Britain in 2015 with a grant of £96,000 over three years towards the "costs of the director to lead the organisation to engage people on the conservation benefits of rewilding and to take practical action to commence rewilding in certain locations" (see pg. 26 in (35)). However, in what was an unfortunate but highly portentous choice of word in commending the initiative, the news release had said  – “This will create opportunities for communities, which will unravel as the project progresses” (italics my emphasis)(34).

Urgent need for a strategic review of where it is going and what it hopes to achieve

The withdrawal from Summit to Sea kicked away a substantial chunk of Rewilding Britain’s agenda, leaving me wondering what big idea Rewilding Britain has left, and prompts the urgent need for a strategic review of where it is going and what it hopes to achieve. I don’t think that the prospect of working with a couple of local authorities, one of which – Sheffield - has an appalling record of disregarding local views on publicly owned land, makes much of a work program (36,37) . There may be other things on the go, like the pursuit of Knepp-alikes, Castle Howard may be the latest, but it is not really the stuff that captures the public’s imagination when it is just another rich landowner like Lord Somerleyton and his Hall and Estate in Suffolk (38,39). I saw that the Scottish Rewilding Alliance had been launched at The Big Picture Conference in September, with Rewilding Britain being a member, although I don’t think there was an official representative from Rewilding Britain there, but there was the ever present malign influence of Rewilding Europe (40-43). This Alliance is about the dreadful re-peopling and rewilding agenda in Scotland (11). I also came across this, and I am not sure what implications it has for any further damaging misdirection for rewilding in Britain. On the 8 October, a few weeks after The Big Picture Conference, Rewilding Europe held a gathering in Cuenca, E of Madrid, where there was the launch of Rewilding Spain (44). Peter Cairns of Scotland The Big Picture and the Scottish Rewilding Alliance was at this gathering, and reported that a couple of days later, rewilders from 12 countries were there “to formulate a Call For Action for rewilding across Europe. Forests, peatlands, rivers and wetlands all need fresh thinking for nature and people to prosper” (45). You can see from the group photograph that Cairns took that Rebecca Wrigley of Rewilding Britain was also there (front row, 3rd from right) and she looks surprisingly cheerful given that she must have known at the time that Rewilding Britain was considering withdrawing from Summit to Sea. I wonder whether the trustees of Rewilding Britain were aware of this meeting, and whether they gave Rebecca a remit/mandate to be there? I very much doubt that I would want to see any of the outcome of that Call For Action implemented here, given the involvement of Rewilding Europe in formulating it.

I suspect Rewilding Britain will make claim to have a big role in climate change mitigation (see earlier). A debate was held last Monday in Westminster Hall in the Houses of Parliament on restoring nature and climate change as a result of a petition launched last April by Rewilding Britain (46,47). The petition called on the UK Government to make a commitment to nature's recovery, asserting that “rewilding and other natural climate solutions can draw millions of tonnes of carbon dioxide out of the air through restoring and protecting our living systems”. The petition quickly exceeded the 10,000 signatures that would trigger a response from Government (47) and which was appended to the petition webpage on 2 May (46). When the petition closed on 17 October it had also exceeded the 100,000 that would trigger a debate. I’ll come back to that debate later, because we first have to see where this notion came from. Back in January, I caught a glimpse of a draft proposal written by George Monbiot to use marginal land for carbon sequestration through vegetation restoration, and while I didn’t particularly want to see the details, I was told that Monbiot was seeking information for his idea on where and how much low grade agricultural land there was that could be used (Agricultural Land Classification Grades 4 & 5 – see (48)). Monbiot subsequently wrote an article in the Guardian in early April about the launch of a campaign for raising awareness of natural climate solutions, the article linking them to “protecting and rewilding the world’s living systems”, and asserting that it was “an essential survival strategy” the implication being that it was for humans, not necessarily for wild nature; pointing then to the campaign website where he wrote that there was a “considerable overlap between the most effective Natural Climate Solutions identified so far, and the priorities of the global ecology, conservation and rewilding movements” (49,50).

A letter was written as well to governments and international bodies signed by prominent activists, scientists and artists – the last two signatories were Rebecca Wrigley, Chief Executive, Rewilding Britain, and George Monbiot, journalist (51). For the significance of my mentioning that, I applaud that at last, a journalist has made public the connection between these two people, this being Jon Coles, a writer on farming and rural affairs for The Pembrokeshire Herald “The chief executive of Rewilding Britain is Rebecca Wrigley. Ms Wrigley is the partner of journalist and author George Monbiot. The application for grant support for Summit to the Sea has a return address which is the couple’s home in Oxford” (52). I did counsel Rebecca after the launch of Rewilding Britain not to use their home address for its correspondence.

Thus, unsurprisingly, given that connection, up popped the petition in the name of Rewilding Britain, as well as a page appearing on its website a few weeks later under its work programs entitled "Rewilding vs climate breakdown" – the webpage embeds a video animation from Monbiot’s Natural Climate Solutions website, as well as a link to that website. (53). There was also information there, as well as in a press release (47) about a report written by Rewilding Britain that “outlines how a new subsidy system could, through a rewilding-based approach, financially support farmers and other landowners to increase carbon sequestration on their land and restore damaged and degraded ecosystems” – it describes rewilding as a natural climate solution, the latter phrase appearing frequently throughout the report (54). I have a natural antipathy towards subsidy systems for land users, ineffective and often corrupt as they are, and so this report didn’t raise much enthusiasm (55,56). However, I did note that Rewilding Britain saw its Summit to Sea project as an opportunity to test how these subsidy payments might work in practice (see pg. 15 in (54)). So that at least told me one way in which the whopping £3.4 m funding it had for the project would be spent.

A distraction from the overriding need to leave fossil fuels in the ground

I try to steer clear of climate change because of its bending by unscrupulous people to various nefarious agendas, but with it touching on rewilding, I felt I had to examine the scientific claims of natural climate solutions. Both Monbiot on the Natural Climate Solutions website (see point 7 in (50)) and the Rewilding Britain report on subsidies (in the references of the Appendix, but why are there duplicate citations? - (54)) make great play of a journal article in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences from 2017 on the potential contribution of various natural climate solutions, like restoration in forest, agriculture and grasslands, and wetlands, to climate mitigation, showing by far that reforestation has the greatest potential (see Fig. 1 in (57)). However, what is never revealed by the people that cite this reference is that the authors of the article go on to show that the mitigation potential from natural climate solutions is far outweighed by the impact that driving down fossil fuel emissions would have (see Fig. 2 in (57)). In fact, a response to that article, based on the physics and ecology of mining carbon dioxide from the atmosphere by ecosystems, is very sceptical that reforesting and managing ecosystems are what they are often cracked up to be in mitigating global warming and offsetting anthropogenic carbon emissions (58). Providing a perspective on how well plants and ecosystems sequester carbon, the authors concluded that the “ability of individual plants and ecosystems to mine carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, as defined by rates and cumulative amounts, is limited by laws of physics and ecological principles. Consequently, the rates and amount of net carbon uptake are slow and low compared to the rates and amounts of carbon dioxide we release by fossil fuels combustion”

Further, a policy forum article on climate change in the journal Science noted that amongst its authors were two that had contributed to the optimistic assessment of the potential of natural climate solutions in the article in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, but were now in agreement with more pessimistic colleagues that, as the technical literature generally acknowledged, natural climate solutions were not enough, that the benefits of natural climate solutions do not decrease the imperative for mitigation from the energy and industrial sectors, a point they said that sometimes got lost in public-facing conversations (59). The need for both natural and energy solutions to stabilize climate then became the position of the remaining authors of the article in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences in their response to the criticism there had been to it (60). Chris Lang authors REDD-Monitor, an advocacy website that argues against the contradictions and controversy behind the REDD (reducing emissions from deforestation and degradation) a carbon-trading scheme to allow continued greenhouse gas emissions from burning fossil fuels by offsetting these emissions against “avoided deforestation” in the Global South. Within a couple of days of Monbiot launching his Natural Climate Solutions campaign, Lang wrote a critique of it, expressing that were several aspects that concerned him (61). Thus he noted that there was the serious danger that natural climate solutions were being promoted by oil and gas corporations, as a dangerous distraction from the need to stop burning fossil fuels. He thought that Monbiot should be more critical of the way that natural climate solutions would work with indigenous people and other local communities, as studies had shown that they suffered from ongoing weak enforcement of domestic laws on forests and land, leading to limited effectiveness, and contestation or conflict over property rights and community benefits. His key concern, though, was that “using nature to address climate change could undermine the increasingly desperate need to stop burning fossil fuels” (61).

Oddly enough, the reason why I had gone through these critiques of natural climate solutions was that I had been contacted by Chris Pattison in April earlier this year, just after Monbiot launched his campaign. Chris was setting up a non-profit foundation in the Netherlands that was going to use purchase of land for rewilding/tree planting as an example of functional carbon sequestration, and as an increase of wild space in key areas, as well as helping to coordinate and promote climate positive actions/behaviours at an individual (human person) level (62). We discussed the suitability of some of the Dutch coastal areas to be new, wild areas, as their purchase could be relatively cheaper, but there were issues about their suitability, not least that they may become inundated in the future. I explained that while the proposition of natural climate solutions was becoming popular, I was never comfortable tying ecological restoration to carbon sequestration, in the same way that I am uncomfortable about ascribing other anthropocentric benefits to wild nature, such as ecosystem services.

Likewise, there was a tendency now to view reintroduction of highly interactive species in terms of their functional traits having some beneficial effects, as the tools behind fences to provide services that are primarily of benefit to us, such as beaver and flood prevention; bison and other herbivores for conservation grazing and to clear woody vegetation; and large carnivores in the control of wild ungulates (1,63-66). Moreover, danger rests in orchestrating landscape vegetation solely on the basis that it has high net productivity, as has often been done in the choice of fast growing tree species in plantations, when landscapes exploited in this way offer little in the way of habitat for native wild nature (67). In addition, we have in Britain the fetishizing of upland sloppy peat bogs, lauded for their carbon content, even though few are natural and when in reality they are evidence of landscape degradation (68). I stressed to Chris that wild nature has an intrinsic value; that we should give it an existence that isn’t predicated on any human benefit, such as a space of its own; that rewilding was about benefiting wild nature and not the human species. Specifically, in terms of climate breakdown and natural climate solutions, it seemed past irony that wild nature was being put at the service yet again of stupid humans by having a burden placed on it as the solution to human-induced climate breakdown. I concluded by saying that, as others have pointed out (see above), natural climate solutions are unlikely to be enough to counter the damage that has already been done, and we continue to do, and that they may just be a distraction from the overriding need to leave fossil fuels in the ground.

The failings of Rewilding Britain are not all that we have to look forward to

Belatedly, it seems that Monbiot – whose weathervane is larger than most – has finally got the message about natural climate solutions when he recently teamed up with Greta Thunberg to make a short film extolling their virtues, and suggested that they were being overlooked as a climate mitigation solution. However, while he now is acknowledging that they are not enough, he also reduces wild nature to a use as a tool to mitigate human stupidity (~1.03 minutes into video in (69)):
“Nature is a tool we can use to repair our broken climate. These natural climate solutions could make a massive difference, but only if we leave fossil fuels in the ground as well”

I read the Debate Pack issued before the petition debate (see above)(70) and listened to the first half hour of the debate in Westminster Hall (71). An early reference to the Archers, a cringe worthy, long-running radio soap opera about a farming community, was not a good augury, and so it proved when an endless procession of MPs made early interventions in the debate about the wonderful things that were going on in nature conservation in their constituencies, and of the Wildlife Trusts and others involved, often serving up the unverified propaganda of the latter, and there was a barrage of references to peat bogs and carbon storage. Thus the number of MPs at the start of around 25 dwindled as they left after having done their duty by their constituency by reading into the record of the debate. I have since read the full transcript, and see little of any substance, except for references to a few international policy documents (72). I get little feel from it of the intrinsic value of wild nature, that wild nature should be the primary beneficiary in the nature restoration measures associated with these natural climate solutions, of giving wild nature its own space. Nor that this debate recognised and understood what rewilding really meant, that it was about an imperative for wild nature, and not getting the human species out of the mess that it had created for itself. Instead there was this odd sentence in the response to the debate from Zac Goldsmith, Minister of State, DEFRA – “Much of what I have described, here and overseas, involves what some people refer to as rewilding, which is effectively integrating natural closed processes into land management”. Since he then referred to the inevitable references to Knepp during the debate, and expressed a longing to go there, the “closed processes” must be referring to the livestock grazing enclosed behind fencing on this farm – this is not rewilding (22).

There was a very telling indicator in the debate in that Rewilding Britain was only mentioned twice, and on neither occasion in relation to any track record of achievement. Given that Rewilding Britain has lost its opportunity by withdrawing from Summit to Sea to test how it’s proposed subsidy scheme payments to incentivise farmers and other landowners to increase carbon sequestration on their land and restore damaged and degraded ecosystems (see above) then it is unlikely any day soon to build that track record, but then how compatible is that anyway with being an "a small, agile catalyst organisation" (see above). Fortunately, there are others who can have a go at filling the void - I see now that Chris Pattinson has switched his attention away from the Netherlands, and on to the UK and Ireland in terms of a pilot project of land purchase and tree planting (73). There has also been a rewilding campaign launched under the banner of a UK Green New Deal, a set of proposals for restructuring society and economy, and stewarding nature for a just climate transition, which have been put forward by a think tank dedicated to democratising ownership (74). A UK Restoration and Rewilding Plan will be implemented as part of A Green New Deal for Nature (75,76). There are aspects of this Plan that are instantly appealing to me, and I will be finding out more. It comes as a relief that the failings of Rewilding Britain are not all that we have to look forward to, that they are not the only game in town in town

Mark Fisher 30 October, 8 November 2019

(1) A challenge to Rewilding Britain, Self-willed land August 2015
www.self-willed-land.org.uk/articles/challenge_RB.htm

(2) Discriminating between the wild and not wild, Self-willed land August 2017

www.self-willed-land.org.uk/articles/wild_not_wild.htm

(3) Moving past process to outcome – the manifestation of wild land, September 2017
www.self-willed-land.org.uk/articles/process_outcomes.htm

(4) CCI Collaborative Fund for Conservation
http://www.cambridgeconservation.org/cci-collaborative-fund-conservation

(5) Rewilding Europe and Rewilding Britain join forces, Rewilding Europe 4 August 2017
https://rewildingeurope.com/news/rewilding-europe-and-rewilding-britain-join-forces/

(6) Nature: our best ally, Rewilding Europe 22 October 2019
https://rewildingeurope.com/blog/nature-our-best-ally/

(7) Hope is natural, hope is wild, Self-willed land September 2018
www.self-willed-land.org.uk/articles/smell.htm

(8) Meet the Knepp group: the billionaires dedicated to ‘rewilding’ the environment, Mike Wade, The Times 8 December 2018
https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/meet-the-knepp-group-the-billionaires-dedicated-to-rewilding-the-environment-dgqrmxl9w

(9) Meet The Billionaires “Splurging” On “Rewilding” The Environment, Saving The World
Captain Planet 2 September 2019

https://www.captain-planet.net/meet-the-billionaires-splurging-on-rewilding-the-environment-saving-the-world/

(10) Summit to Sea, who’s behind it? Jac o the North 16 October 2019

https://jacothenorth.net/blog/summit-to-sea-whos-behind-it/

(11) An ecological landscape – connectivity, cores and coexistence, March 2019
www.self-willed-land.org.uk/articles/connectivity.htm

(12) Summit to Sea: Restoring ecological and economic resilience in Mid-Wales. Project Overview, Endangered Landscapes Programme
https://www.endangeredlandscapes.org/projects/summit-to-sea-restoring-flourishing-ecosystems-and-a-resilient-economy-in-mid-wales

(13) Summit to Sea: Restoring ecological and economic resilience in Mid-Wales. Project Overview, Endangered Landscapes Programme
http://www.endangeredlandscapes.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/Wales_web.pdf

(14) Mid Wales wilderness scheme 'not targeting farming', Steffan Messenger BBC Wales News 7 November 2018
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-46112865

(15) Mark Fisher (@markwilderness) Twitter 7 Nov 2018
https://twitter.com/markwilderness/status/1060246716753031168

(16) Short Debate: Rewilding Wales: The case for breathing life into our landscapes and rural communities on World Environment Day, Plenary, National Assembly of Wales 5 June 2019
https://record.assembly.wales/Plenary/5663?lang=en-GB#A51368

(17) A clear view of the landscape, Self-willed land December 2016
www.self-willed-land.org.uk/articles/clear_view.htm

(18) Farmers' Union of Wales wants rewilding project scrapped, BBC Wales News 31 July 2019
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-49186349

(19) Welsh farmers fight rewilding plans which could take over 10,000 hectares, Lauren Dean, Farmers Guardian 07 Aug 2019
https://www.fginsight.com/news/news/welsh-farmers-fight-rewilding-plans-which-could-take-over-10000-hectares-91108

(20) Ecodyfi pulls out of rewilding scheme, Elgan Hearn, Cambrian News 11 September 2019
http://www.cambrian-news.co.uk/article.cfm?id=130333&headline=Ecodyfi%20pulls%20out%20of%20rewilding%20scheme&sectionIs=news&searchyear=2019

(21) Ecodyfi pulls out of £3.4m Summit to Sea rewilding project, BBC Wales News 4 September 2019
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-49586263

(22) Mark Fisher (@markwilderness) Twitter 7 September 2019

https://twitter.com/markwilderness/status/1170384265235894272

(23) Mark Fisher (@markwilderness) Twitter 8 Sept 2019
https://twitter.com/markwilderness/status/1170647694550937600

(24) Movement ecology and rewilding, Self-willed land September 2019
www.self-willed-land.org.uk/articles/movement_ecology.htm

(25) Johns, D. and Soulé, M. (1995) Getting from Here to There: An Outline of the Wildlands Reserve Design Process. Wild Earth 5(4) 32-36
https://wildlandsnetwork.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/14_vol.-5-4-winter-1995-96.pdf

(26) Item 16 - Agenda, Powys County Council, Thursday, 10th October, 2019 10.30am
https://powys.moderngov.co.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?MId=4776

(27) Agenda Annex: Item 16, Voting Results, Powys COUNTY COUNCIL Thursday, 10th October, 2019
https://powys.moderngov.co.uk/documents/b17223/Voting%20Results%2010th-Oct-2019%2010.30%20County%20Council.pdf?T=9

(28) New chapter for mid Wales’ Summit to Sea project as changes are made to its governance, 21 October 2019 Latest Press 21 October 2019
https://tinyurl.com/y5bwvxw6

(29) Where we are, and where we’re going - Autumn update, Rewilding Britain 21 October 2019
https://tinyurl.com/yytl23sy

(30) Wildlife scheme: Farmers' worries cause charity exit, BBC Wales 21 October 2019
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-50117566

(31) Farming anger forces Rewilding Britain to pull out of Summit To Sea project in Mid Wales, Andrew Forgrave, NortWalesLive 21 October 2019
https://www.dailypost.co.uk/news/local-news/rewilding-britain-summit-sea-wales-17119541

(32) Funders desert re-wilding project in Wales, Ken Fletcher, The Scottish Farmer 25 October 2019
https://www.thescottishfarmer.co.uk/news/17993428.funders-desert-re-wilding-project-wales/

(33) Key partner pulls out of £3.4m rewilding project, Johann Tasker, Farmers Weekly 23 October 2019
https://www.fwi.co.uk/news/environment/key-partner-pulls-out-of-3-4m-rewilding-project

(34) ‘Summit to Sea’ Aims to Restore Flourishing Ecosystems, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation News 8 October 2018
https://esmeefairbairn.org.uk/summit-to-sea-aims-to-restore-flourishing-ecosystems

(35) ANNUAL REPORT & ACCOUNTS, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation 2015
https://tinyurl.com/y47fdn7g

(36) Alastair Driver (@AliDriverUK) Twitter 14 October 2019
https://twitter.com/AliDriverUK/status/1183853102505562113

(37) Nature improvement and restoration areas - are they a step towards rewilding?, Self-willed land June 2011
www.self-willed-land.org.uk/articles/nature_improvement.htm

(38) Majestic country estate could become hub for wildlife project. Thomas Chapman, The Lowestoft Journal 20 April 2018
https://www.lowestoftjournal.co.uk/news/somerleyton-estate-rewilding-project-1-5484977

(39) Somerleyton Estate trying to make Rewilding in East Anglia a reality, Somerleyton 23rd April 2018
https://www.somerleyton.co.uk/blog-post/somerleyton-estate-trying-to-make-rewilding-in-east-anglia-a-reality/

(40) Rewilding Scotland: why it's about 'baby steps', not bringing back the wolf, Richard Baynes, The Herald 22nd September 2019
https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/17918947.rewilding-scotland-39-s-39-baby-steps-39-not-bringing-back-wolf/

(41) The Scottish Rewilding Alliance
https://www.rewild.scot/

(42) Peter Cairns (@PCairnsPhoto) Twitter 21 September 2019
https://twitter.com/PCairnsPhoto/status/1175359417539321857

(43) Rewilding Europe (@RewildingEurope) Twitter 22 September 2019
https://twitter.com/RewildingEurope/status/1175687197984546817

(44) Peter Cairns (@PCairnsPhoto) Twitter 8 October 2019
https://twitter.com/PCairnsPhoto/status/1181691494115287041

(45) Peter Cairns (@PCairnsPhoto) Twitter 10 October 2019
https://twitter.com/PCairnsPhoto/status/1182413378524012545

(46) Restore nature on a massive scale to help stop climate breakdown, Petitions, UK Government and Parliament
https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/254607

(47) Rewilding Britain proposes post-Brexit transformation of land use to deliver UK zero-carbon target, Rewilding Britain Latest News 21 May 2019
https://www.rewildingbritain.org.uk/press/rewilding-britain-proposes-post-brexit-transformation-of-land-use-to-deliver-uk-zero-carbon-target

(48) Agricultural Land Classification: protecting the best and most versatile agricultural land, Natural England Technical Information Note TIN049 edition 2, December 2012
http://publications.naturalengland.org.uk/file/4424325

(49) The natural world can help save us from climate catastrophe, George Monbiot, Guardian 3 Apr 2019

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/apr/03/natural-world-climate-catastrophe-rewilding

(50) Averting Climate Breakdown by Restoring Ecosystems - A call to action, George Monbiot. Natural Climate solutions
https://www.naturalclimate.solutions/full-rationale

(51) To: The UNCBD, UNFCCC, governments and NGOs, Natural Climate Solutions 3 April 2019
https://www.naturalclimate.solutions/the-letter

(52) Summit to Sea: a guest post by Jon Coles, Jac o the North 14 October 2019
https://jacothenorth.net/blog/summit-to-sea-a-guest-post-by-jon-coles/

(53) Rewilding vs climate breakdown, Rewilding Britain
https://www.rewildingbritain.org.uk/our-work/rewilding-vs-climate-breakdown

(54) Rewilding and climate breakdown: how restoring nature can help decarbonise the UK, Rewilding Britain 19 May 2019
https://www.rewildingbritain.org.uk/assets/uploads/Rewilding%20and%20Climate%20Breakdown%20-%20a%20report%20by%20Rewilding%20Britain.pdf

(55) The neoliberalisation of nature conservation, Self-willed land February 2013
www.self-willed-land.org.uk/articles/neoliberal_conservation.htm

(56) The moral corruptness of Higher Level Stewardship, Self-willed land August 2013
www.self-willed-land.org.uk/articles/corrupt_hls.htm

(57) Griscom, B.W., Adams, J., Ellis, P.W., Houghton, R.A., Lomax, G., Miteva, D.A., Schlesinger, W.H., Shoch, D., Siikamäki, J.V., Smith, P. and Woodbury, P. (2017) Natural climate solutions. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 114(44), pp.11645-11650
https://www.pnas.org/content/pnas/114/44/11645.full.pdf

(58) Baldocchi, D., & Penuelas, J. (2019). The physics and ecology of mining carbon dioxide from the atmosphere by ecosystems. Global change biology, 25(4), 1191-1197
http://www.creaf.uab.cat/Global-Ecology/Pdfs_UEG/2019%20GloChaBiol4.pdf

(59) Anderson, C.M., DeFries, R.S., Litterman, R., Matson, P.A., Nepstad, D.C., Pacala, S., Schlesinger, W.H., Shaw, M.R., Smith, P., Weber, C. and Field, C.B. (2019) Natural climate solutions are not enough. Science, 363(6430):933-934
https://science.sciencemag.org/content/363/6430/933

(60) Griscom, B.W., Lomax, G., Kroeger, T., Fargione, J.E., Adams, J., Almond, L., Bossio, D., Cook-Patton, S.C., Ellis, P.W., Kennedy, C.M. and Kiesecker, J., 2019. We need both natural and energy solutions to stabilize our climate. Global change biology, 25(6):1889-1890
https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdf/10.1111/gcb.14612

(61) Is the new Natural Climate Solutions campaign a distraction from the need to leave fossil fuels in the ground? Chris Lang, REDD-Monitor 5 April 2019
https://redd-monitor.org/2019/04/05/is-the-new-natural-climate-solutions-campaign-a-distraction-from-the-need-to-leave-fossil-fuels-in-the-ground/

(62) The Planet Needs Your Help, Stichting Target 2030
https://target2030.org/

(63) Addressing ecological and legislative issues, Self-willed land July 2017
www.self-willed-land.org.uk/articles/wilding_works.htm

(64) The greatest challenge for living with wolves rests within the human mind, Self-willed land November 2017
www.self-willed-land.org.uk/articles/wolf_conflict.htm

(65) The continuing destruction of our native trophic pyramid, Self-willed land February 2018
www.self-willed-land.org.uk/articles/spiral_down.htm

(66) Using functional traits - walking rewilding and wolves straight into the criticism of Goldilocks Standards, Self-willed land June 2018
www.self-willed-land.org.uk/articles/functional_traits.htm

(67) Seddon, N., Turner, B., Berry, P., Chausson, A., & Girardin, C. A. (2019). Grounding nature-based climate solutions in sound biodiversity science. Nature Climate Change, 9(2), 84-87

https://www.nbspolicyplatform.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/Seddon-et-al-2019-Nature-Climate-Change.pdf

(68) The free for all of trophic rewilding, Self-willed land January 2016
www.self-willed-land.org.uk/articles/free_for_all.htm

(69) We can still fix this': Greta Thunberg and George Monbiot issue climate change plea, ITV Report 19 September 2019
https://www.itv.com/news/2019-09-19/greta-thunberg-and-george-monbiot-in-climate-crisis-short-film-protect-restore-fund/

(70) Debate on an e-petition on restoring nature and climate change, Dr Elena Ares & Nikki Sutherland. Debate Pack Number CDP 2019/0230, House of Commons Library 23 October 2019
http://researchbriefings.files.parliament.uk/documents/CDP-2019-0230/CDP-2019-0230.pdf

(71) LIVE climate breakdown e-petition debate, UK Parliament 28 October 2019
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yVfFJeyLius

(72) Restoring Nature and Climate Change, Westminster Hall, Hansard, UK Parliament 28 October 2019
https://hansard.parliament.uk/commons/2019-10-28/debates/B12362DC-0F6A-481B-A1E6-973776F0F9F9/RestoringNatureAndClimateChange

(73) Pilot Project: UK & Ireland 2020, Target 2030
https://target2030.org/pilot-project/

(74) Executive summary, Road Map to a Green New Deal: From Extraction to Stewardship, Mathew Laurence, Common Wealth July 2019
https://common-wealth.co.uk/css/pdfs/Road-Map-to-a-Green-New-Deal.pdf

(75) A Green New Deal for Nature, 8.1 Road Map to a Green New Deal: From Extraction to Stewardship, Simon Lewis September 2019
https://common-wealth.co.uk/css/pdfs/Common-Wealth-Land-GND.pdf

(76) UK Restoration and Rewilding - Part of Common Wealth's Road Map to the Green New Deal
https://common-wealth.co.uk/re-wilding.htm

url:www.self-willed-land.org.uk/articles/summit.htm

www.self-willed-land.org.uk  mark.fisher@self-willed-land.org.uk

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