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Centre for Landscape Regeneration

 
The Centre for Landscape Regeneration is part of the £40-million countryside regeneration project the Changing The Environment Programme funded by NERC to safeguard the UK’s most important ecosystems and agricultural land. Failure to adequately protect and restore natural ecosystems has serious economic and social consequences, but nature-based solutions can help to meet net zero climate targets, adapt to climate change, protect biodiversity and deliver services that support human wellbeing. Although nature-based solutions are widely cited in country climate change pledges and successful and sustainable land-use projects operate in hundreds of locations globally, there has been a failure to deliver sustainable landscapes at meaningful scales, and there is little prospect of progress until financial, institutional and social impediments to change are met.
 
There is a need to work with all stakeholders to assess the benefits of protecting and restoring nature, transparently debate the trade-offs, quantify the value of ecosystem services and disservices of alternative land uses, and design incentives to encourage long-term conservation, restoration and regeneration strategies for landscapes. The challenge is that the implementation of nature-based solutions is often piecemeal, narrow in focus and undermined by weak connections between research, policy and practice. The Centre redresses this problem by applying its breadth of expertise in a comprehensive and practically driven whole-system analysis and by providing the knowledge and tools to deliver successful landscape regeneration programmes. It provides the knowledge and tools needed to regenerate the British countryside using cost-effective nature-based solutions that harness the power of ecosystems to provide broad societal benefits including biodiversity recovery and climate mitigation and adaptation.
 
The Centre is co-led by Professor David Coomes, Director of the Cambridge Conservation Research Institute, and Professor Emily Shuckburgh OBE, Director of Cambridge Zero, and partners with the RSPB, UK Centre for Ecology and Hydrology and The Endangered Landscapes Programme. Its £10 million programme is tackling environmental threats to home-grown vegetables and endangered wild animals in the UK, with projects focusing on everything from eco-friendly farming in the Fens to protecting pine martens in the Cairngorms. Researchers work closely with farmers, landowners, conservation groups and local communities to address ecological threats such as extinction, flooding, drought and pollution, with an emphasis on whole systems approaches and taking a holistic, long-term view that encompasses the whole ecology of a region.