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Northern Ireland Environment Link Logo





    Jul 2020 right left


    Energy Efficiency in Business

    Tuesday 7th July


    40+ orgs call for Green Recovery 28 May 2020

    Dear First Minister and deputy First Minister,
    Re: A Resilient Economy, Healthy Communities and the Natural World
    We understand that the Covid19 response and ongoing negotiations regarding Brexit are immediate priorities for the Northern Ireland Executive. With this in mind, the Northern Ireland Executive has the opportunity to lead our long–term recovery by putting a resilient economy, healthy communities, and a thriving natural environment at the heart of the recovery effort. We, the undersigned, call on the Northern Ireland Executive to:

    Create A More Resilient Economy – In partnership with stakeholders, develop and deliver the ‘green new deal’ commitment contained within the ‘New Decade New Approach’ agreement by investing in infrastructure, housing, technology and skills to generate new jobs that directly contribute to a sustainable future. Ensure that public and private finance meets a ‘net zero test’ and prioritise investment in low carbon infrastructure. We must now mainstream cycling, walking and sustainable public transport infrastructure to realise additional health, wellbeing and environmental benefits.

    Increase Space for Nature and People – Place the health and wellbeing of people and nature at the heart of the recovery by increasing access to nature–rich green space for everyone.  Enhanced access to, and improved provision of high–quality green space, is an essential pre–requisite for good health (physical and mental), wellbeing and prosperity. We must capitalise on these natural health benefits by introducing measures that will enable people and nature to flourish.  For example, in planning for our children and young people returning to school, we ask that the multiple benefits of outdoor learning become an integral part of daily school life.

    Strengthen Nature’s Protections – Improve the laws that ensure the natural world is protected not exploited by ensuring the swift passage of environmental legislation as we leave the EU Transition phase. Rapidly scale up the implementation, monitoring and enforcement of our environmental protections by delivering on the commitment to develop an Independent Environmental Protection Agency for Northern Ireland. We must also introduce targets in law for the restoration of nature (both on land and at sea) and incentivise sustainable approaches to food production, farming and fishing, underpinned by the Environment Strategy for Northern Ireland.
    This public health crisis has shown us the power of the collective human spirit – the value of community, friendship, and hope. There will be difficult choices in the weeks and months ahead as the Northern Ireland Executive leads us out of this crisis. In doing so, we ask you to create something better and lead us to a new normal: a climate–safe, nature–rich, healthy world for all.
    We would ask the Northern Ireland Executive to respond to our asks above and would welcome the opportunity to meet you to discuss – alongside Northern Ireland Executive colleagues and heads of agencies. In the meantime, we wish you all the best with the recovery efforts over the coming weeks and months.
    Yours Sincerely
    Action Renewables
    Belfast Food Co–op
    Belfast Food Network
    Brookeville Farms
    Business in the Community
    Chartered Institute for Environmental Health
    Chief Officers Third Sector
    Community Foundation for Northern Ireland
    Culmore Organic Farm
    East Belfast Enterprise
    Environmental Justice Network
    Friends of the Earth Northern Ireland
    Glasswater Farm
    Harvest Fayre
    Helen’s Bay Organic
    Jubilee Farm
    Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful
    Mourne Heritage Trust
    National Trust Northern Ireland
    Nature Friendly Farming Network
    Northern Ireland Council for Voluntary Action
    Northern Ireland Environment Link
    Northern Ireland Marine Task Force
    Outdoor Recreation Northern Ireland
    RSA Food and Farming Commission
    Royal Society for the Protection of Birds Northern Ireland
    Royal Society of Ulster Architects
    Social Farms and Gardens Northern Ireland
    Something Fishy Northern Ireland
    Sustainable Northern Ireland
    Ulster Wildlife
    Woodland Trust Northern Ireland
    Youth Climate Association of Northern Ireland
    Dara McAnulty, young nature writer and campaigner
    Doctor Amanda Slevin, Queen’s University Belfast
    Doctor Gavan Rafferty, University of Ulster
    Professor Geraint Ellis, Queen’s University Belfast
    James Dawson Stelfox MBE, architect
    Professor John Barry, Queen’s University Belfast
    Simon Dougan MBE, Yellow Door