Peak District moors project seeks private funding

An organisation working to restore Peak District peatlands is to receive funding in a pilot scheme to encourage sustainable private sector investment in our natural environment.

Sunday, 14th June 2020, 12:00 am

Moors for the Future is a partnership that has been working since 2003 to restore the peatlands of the Peak District and South Pennine moors.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Environment Agency, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and Triodos Bank UK have formed a collaboration to support environmental projects to create sustainable funding models.

The project will receive grant funding from Defra, the EA and EFF to complete business plans to attract investment and deliver long-term environmental benefits and sustainable financial returns.

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A dunlin on the South Pennine Moors last year

Emma Howard Boyd, Environment Agency chairman, said: “In England, we are increasingly seeing new extremes of weather accelerating from wettest to driest and back again. Restoring nature is key to managing this.

“You can’t put a price on nature, but investing in its recovery can generate a steady return and will make the UK economy more clean and resilient.

“These projects are designed to attract investment into local economies while developing models for businesses to use and scale up around the world.”

Rebecca Pow, environment minister, said: “The UK is taking a leading global role in tackling climate change and biodiversity loss but, given the scale of the challenge ahead, it is crucial environmental projects have the tools they need to attract private sector investment alongside our government support.

“Ensuring we have a green recovery from coronavirus will be especially important at this time, and this collaboration provides vital financial expertise and support to create funding models which can be used by other projects up and down the country.”

The Government says its 25-year environment plan made clear that public sector funding will continue to be important, but considers that more private sector investment to protect and enhance the environment will also be crucial.

The Peak District National Park Authority is the lead body for Moors for the Future. Partners include the EA, National Trust, RSPB and representatives of the moorland owner and farming community.