SPENDING TIME IN NATURE CAN HELP LOWER EMISSIONS
February 01, 2020 by Extinction Rebellion
Policies to preserve and develop urban green space could help city-dwellers reconnect with nature and help to meet sustainability targets, according to research from the University of Exeter.
The Environment International report found people who live in more built-up areas and spend less of their time in nature are less likely to take actions that would benefit the environment and help tackle climate change, such as recycling or adopting eco-friendly shopping habits.
The survey looked at 24,000 people’s responses for their exposure to nature in their local area, recreational visits to natural environments like parks, woodlands and beaches, and how much they valued the natural world.
Lead author Dr Ian Alcock said: “More than 80% of the English population now live in urban areas and are increasingly detached from the natural world.
“Greening our cities is often proposed to help us adapt to climate change – for example, city parks and trees can reduce urban heat spots.
“But our results suggest urban greening could help reduce the damaging behaviours which cause environmental problems in the first place by reconnecting people to the natural word.”
The report found people who live in greener neighbourhoods, by the coast, or visited natural spaces more regularly tend to make greener choices.