LATEST – Lewisham Council endorse new Biodiversity Action Plan

The London Borough of Lewisham’s new Biodiversity Action Plan, which helps improve biodiversity, protect the borough’s wildlife, and create a greener Lewisham has been endorsed by Lewisham Council.

Local Councillors voted at a meeting last week to endorse the new plan called, ‘A Natural Renaissance 2021-2026’. The plan sets out how Lewisham’s Biodiversity Partnership (LBP) will work with the Council, the local voluntary and community sector and other partners over the next five years to help protect local wildlife, plants and natural habitats.

The Council works closely all year round with the Lewisham Biodiversity Partnership, which brings together a diverse range of organisations, volunteers and individuals with a shared interest in improving and protecting biodiversity in the borough.

The Partnership’s plan proposes a number of actions that LBP will take to support the Council’s work to create a greener Lewisham – the majority of which will be delivered by local volunteers. These include:

  • Supporting the installation of more green roofs in Lewisham, which are roofs where vegetation has been planted to boost biodiversity.
  • Working with landlords and other landowners to help them transform urban areas to provide habitats for local wildlife.
  • Reconnecting people with rivers and highlighting how safe access to rivers and an improved river corridor can provide a range of health, safety and environmental benefits.
  • Delivering at least 60 nature conservation volunteer sessions and 30 guided walks per year
  • Delivering 500 educational events for 8,000 local children every year.
  • Working with community art groups to enhance urban locations, such as tunnels, with biodiversity inspired art murals.
  • Providing practical advice to local residents on how they can enhance their private gardens and local areas to boost biodiversity.

Cllr Patrick Codd, Cabinet Member for Environment and Transport, said: “This action plan sets out a clear vision that will help protect and enhance our existing green spaces and rivers, transform urban areas into eco-friendly havens for local biodiversity, and create a greener borough that’s teeming with local wildlife.

“None of this work would be possible without volunteers, who are the backbone of the local response to the ecological crisis – and I would like to give a huge thanks to every single resident and community group involved in these efforts.

“We look forward to continuing to work with the Lewisham Biodiversity Partnership and our communities to help deliver the actions set out in this report. It goes without saying that reversing the damage that has been done to our planet as a result of the climate crisis will be no easy task – but by working together, we can help to create cleaner air, healthier neighbourhoods and a better world for all of us.”

Mike Keogh, Chair of the Lewisham Biodiversity Partnership, said: “Biodiversity is inextricably linked to climate change, and as such, the conservation of our borough’s natural habitats is critical to addressing the climate emergency and protecting the environment for future generations.

“As an inner-city borough, Lewisham needs as many natural habitats as possible to ensure that wildlife can migrate, survive breed, adapt and evolve – including parks, green spaces on estates, gardens, rivers and green roofs. This action plan sets out how the many partners involved – including the Council, volunteer groups, individuals, contractors and bodies – will work to create a more wildlife friendly borough and help tackle the Climate Emergency.”

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