General Election 2019

General Election 2019

How will your candidates help nature's recovery?

Ask your candidates to stand up for nature

This election, candidates will be canvassing across Lancashire, Manchester and North Merseyside - a chance for you to ask them what they'll do to help nature's recovery on your doorstep.

Wildlife is in serious decline, our wild places are under threat by development and pollution, and we're facing a Climate and Environment Emergency. The UK has become one of the most nature-depleted nations in the world, but it doesn't have to be this way.

It is vital that the next government enacts ambitious systems and laws that will guarantee nature’s recovery.

What are we asking candidates?

We're asking all prospective parliamentary candidates in Lancashire, Manchester and North Merseyside three important questions about what they plan to do for wildlife, if elected.

  1. How will you and your party act decisively to tackle the crises in the natural environment?
  2. What will you do to ensure we have farming policies that support land managers in contributing to nature’s recovery?
  3. What will you do to ensure we protect and revive our seas?

We'll publish their responses on this webpage so you can compare and contrast what different candidates/parties have to offer for wildlife and the environment.

Responses from election candidates

William Ward, Green Party Political Candidate for Liverpool, West Derby

1. How will you and your party act decisively to tackle the crises in the natural environment?

Launch a public information campaign to educate the public about the biodiversity loss and other Climate Emergency threats we face, and encourage the behaviour change needed in response.

2. What will you do to ensure we have farming policies that support land managers in contributing to nature’s recovery?

The Green New Deal will transform our relationship with the land. It will increase space for nature through the restoration of natural landscapes, habitats and species in urban, suburban and countryside environments. We want to increase the opportunities for food growing, for greening our landscape and improving our health. Through reforestation, rewilding and regenerative farming, we will reduce carbon emissions and realise the land’s ability to absorb carbon. The way we produce our food needs to support employment, the ecosystem and improve public health. A ten-year transition to agroecological farming will include the transfer of subsidies to farming methods and food systems that create jobs and restore ecosystem health, including the quality of our soils and rivers. It will also advance food sovereignty, including by localising food systems and putting control over the resources to produce, distribute and access food in the hands of communities and workers across the food system. We will also lay down a new natural inheritance to be passed down to future generations, through the creation of community owned and run forests.

3. What will you do to ensure we protect and revive our seas?

Commit to making at least 30% of UK domestic waters into fully protected Marine Protected Areas by 2030. We will also work with British Overseas Territories (BOTs) to increase the ‘blue belt’ protecting BOTs’ waters from commercial extraction, from the current 32% of coverage to 50%.

Anonymous Liberal Democrat Party Political Candidate for Liverpool City Region

1. How will you and your party act decisively to tackle the crises in the natural environment?

Within the Liverpool City Council area I and my Party have been active in preventing the development of green spaces and have moved a series of motions to the Council about tree planting and leaving parts of parks and other open spaces as wild as can be in a City, especially the area close to the River Mersey. This sort of action is writ large within the Lib Dem manifesto.

2. What will you do to ensure we have farming policies that support land managers in contributing to nature’s recovery?

As a City representative this question is beyond my knowledge and I therefore refer you to our manifiesto.

3. What will you do to ensure we protect and revive our seas?

I have done some work with Chris Davies, one of our NW MEPs who chairs the EU's fishing Committee. We must conserve fish stocks by preventing overfishing and must make greater efforts to protect the sea, especially from plastic contaminants.

Chloe Buckley, Green Party Political Candidate for Morecambe and Lunesdale

1. How will you and your party act decisively to tackle the crises in the natural environment?

Wildlife cannot survive without a home, which is why we support a new Nature and Wellbeing Act and will protect the EU Habitats and Birds Directives against any attempts to weaken them. We will ensure that our valuable wild spaces are properly protected and will prioritise action to reverse both habitat loss and the precipitous decline in our wildlife. We will take action to protect pollinators, including developing pollinator-friendly pesticide strategies. We will also continue to push for an end to whaling and keeping cetaceans in captivity. We will guarantee funding for the Wildlife Crime Unit and take coordinated action to tackle wildlife crime both in the UK and across the globe, recognising its link to global crime networks.

2. What will you do to ensure we have farming policies that support land managers in contributing to nature’s recovery?

The Green Party have a number of policies that will support the recovery of agricultural land. We will develop a soil health monitoring programme for England, to match those in Scotland and Wales, to assess and understand changes in the health of soil over time. We also want to increase funding for the Environment Agency and Natural England, to support the vital work they do to protect our environment. We will invest in peatland restoration and end both the burning of peatlands and use of peat in compost in horticulture. We will advocate an emergency international agreement to conserve and enhance carbon sinks and reservoirs including forests, peat fields and coastal and estuarine areas. As a member of the EU we will press for a review of the Common Agricultural Policy, so that it is focused on supporting UK and other EU farmers as they make the transition to sustainable farming.

3. What will you do to ensure we protect and revive our seas?

The Green Party manifesto commits to making at least 30% of UK domestic waters into fully protected marine protected areas by 2030. We will also work with British Overseas Territories (BOTs) to increase the ‘blue belt’ protecting BOTs’ waters from commercial extraction, from the current 32% of coverage to 50%.

Cat Smith, Labour Party Political Candidate for Lancaster and Fleetwood

1. How will you and your party act decisively to tackle the crises in the natural environment?

It is essential that the next Government tackles the current crisis in the natural environment. The Labour manifesto makes clear that Labour’s Plan for Nature will set legally binding targets to drive the restoration of species and habitats. We will embark on an ambitious programme of tree planting, aiming to plant over 2 billion trees by 2040. We would ensure that the Environment Agency are fully funded, create new National Parks and establish a new environmental tribunal to ensure that administrative decisions are consistent with environmental and nature-recovery.

2. What will you do to ensure we have farming policies that support land managers in contributing to nature’s recovery?

In terms of farms, a Labour government will maintain agricultural and rural structural funds but repurpose them to support environmental land management and sustainable methods of food production.

3. What will you do to ensure we protect and revive our seas?

Finally, in relation to our seas Labour will prevent over-fishing by setting maximum sustainable yields for all shared fish stocks and redistribute fish quotas along social and environmental criteria. We will protect our seas from plastic pollution by making producers responsible for the waste they create and for the full cost of recycling or disposal, encouraging more sustainable design and manufacturing.