The British conservation model: unambitious, irrational and afraid of nature?


A joint event with the Systematics Association and the Linnean Society of London.

18.00 - 19.00, The Linnean Society of London

Beaverrewildingdebategencont (Preview)Humans have been impacting on the landscape of Britain for thousands of years; in our highly-developed country nature and wilderness are struggling to survive. NGOs, organisations and conservators are now struggling to repair the damage made by humans in order to allow Nature to recover. We are in need of mass restoration to combat the impacts of mass destruction. In an ideal world many are now promoting the idea of rewilding, allowing nature to recover by steeping back and letting it go ‘feral’. It is about giving space for spontaneous nature to develop in a modern society. The idea and scientific approach of rewilding was developed by Michael Soulè in the mid-1990s, there are 3 fundamentals to the idea, the three C’s: Cores, Corridors, and Carnivores.

Why are trees cut down in lowlands? Why is land grazed in uplands? Why can’t we let it all be natural without us? Can the land truly ‘recover’ without our intervention? Many wildlife management and conservation organisations will argue that our terrestrial species rely on habitats that must be managed in order to exist. In which case, have we reached the position where are we ready to let go and potentially lose much more?

This debate will consider what we can learn from countries that already practice rewilding over vast areas and what would this mean for nature in Britain? These questions and many more will be explored during our joint debate with the Systematics Association.


Mr George Monbiot, Best-selling author (including the new book 'Feral') and columnist.
Mr Clive Hambler, Stipendiary Lecturer in Biological and Human Sciences, Hetford College – University of Oxford
Mr Aidan Lonergan, Futurescapes Manager, RSPB
Mr Miles King FLS, Conservationist and Commentator

This event is free and open to all, registration is required. To register for this event please complete the form below.

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