Positive for nature – summary for first Imaginarium discussion

Based on first batch of Nearly Wild Project 60 interviews with:

  • Catherine Allen (people and sustainable development approaches benefiting nature)
  • Rick Southwood (Practical management on the Norfolk Broads)
  • Lee Barber (bird records, trends and patterns)

(There are 4 more interviews already uploaded to our website and more coming soon so we have lots more findings already emerging which we will share in future).

Other smaller points and detail within the interviews!

  1. Speed of change – now seeing results from work which goes back to the early 1980’s – time it takes for real change to show.
  2. E.g. agricultural run-off (Broads); sewage treatment outfalls (Broads); tourism management (boats on Broads and their toilet waste)
  3. Drivers – Policy; mutual benefit (e.g. runoff is also a resource loss to farmers); growing understanding
  • The positive force of those involved – passion, enthusiasm; interest; curiosity – need to maintain and support this – purpose of our Nearly Wild work to provide a supportive space for people doing this!
  • Conservation of species, spaces and places has played a major role
  • reservoirs for species to spread out from when given right opportunity.
  • Value of embracing continual changelong term recording; celebrating successes; always new issues / problems and opportunities.
  • Accepting it takes time.
  • accepting that new ideas still have to mature and will inevitably bring their own challenges, however good they seem at first.
  • There is no answer, just a constantly shifting dynamic of current situation and next solutions.
  • Significant shift to understanding that People are at the heart of positive change and the importance of value of local communities
  • Building collective enthusiasm and energy at local level where impacts are most felt and are long term
  • Value of social media
  • Value of diversity of engagement and perspectives
  • Importance of local  power and control (small is beautiful) allowing strategic impact to develop from local initiatives
  • Importance of qualitative information, especially in developing real depth of understanding / nuance
  • Value of considering nature in the wider context. Cross sectoral and between decision hierarchies / decision making levels.
  • Makes it more real and relevant.
  • Clearer link to daily life and value.
  • Value of livelihoods approach (consider lifestyles)
  • Lots to work with – people in more receptive space

Significant increase in value / discussion about environment within public (though perhaps less so politically). Most people enjoy nature in some way (open door)

  • Lock down impacts
  • Value of social media
  • Therefore importance of awareness raising but linked to how to behave and support nature – practical
  • Value of citizen science
  • Building a long term picture (e.g.BTO)
  • Volunteering and providing interest and passion but also route to careers
  • Fantastic opportunity enabled by new online tools and apps (if well co-ordinated) e.g BTO, iNaturalist; iRecord; Merlin
  • Individual actions providing collective impact e.g. bird feeders
  • Increasingly a greater diversity of people getting involved in supporting nature bring new solutions, diversity of approaches and building collective enthusiasm and energy around positive change.