I was updating my contribution to our local community web site and that took me to the SWT website set up to deal with the recent DEFRA consultation. Having sent off my comments I relaxed and was taken aback to see that we are now being invited to participate in " grassroots" discussion on the new paper. Deadline 31st Jan. I hope our local group can contribute some thoughts. If you want to join us let us know.
Here is an extract from the DEFRA web page taken today. Hope the links work.
Grass roots engagementWe want all interested parties to have a say in shaping the development of the White Paper.
To do this we encourage organisations who already have a relationship with local groups, societies, consumers or individuals, to engage them. For example, NGOs who have local groups or large memberships, civil society organisations who are in touch with local civic groups, and any businesses who wish to engage their consumers on White Paper issues.
Organisations such as these may wish to disseminate the discussion document electronically to encourage grass-roots responses back to their national organisation or direct to email@example.com with the subject heading “Grass roots engagement”.
We have now published some resources to help your organisation facilitate grassroots engagement. You will find attached a Guide for Facilitators, a Briefing Note for Participants, and a Feedback Form. The deadline for returning the feedback forms from any grassroots engagement is 31 January 2011.
BackgroundThe White Paper on the natural environment will be a bold and ambitious statement outlining the government’s vision for the natural environment, backed up with practical action to deliver that ambition. It represents an opportunity to change the way we think about and manage the natural environment, seeing it as a system and valuing the services it gives us.
We have made significant progress in tackling environmental degradation in the past 20 years, significantly reducing levels of environmental pollution in our air and water and providing protection for our most precious wildlife sites.
However, changing and increasing pressures on our environment continue to cause degradation (which in turn has social and economic impacts) and managing these pressures is becoming more challenging.
A more systematic, strategic approach is needed that brings together a wider range of players, provides new options to tackle these challenges efficiently and effectively. This requires, and will encourage, a wider understanding of the value of the natural environment to society and the economy.
In order to achieve this, the process of developing the White Paper will be accompanied by a wide-ranging process of stakeholder engagement. This Big Society approach to policy development will allow individuals and communities to contribute innovative ideas on how their local environment can be protected and enhanced.
Panel of environmental experts
Richard Benyon has established a panel of environmental experts to advise him in the development of the White Paper.
If you require more information on the Natural Environment White Paper, please contact the Natural Environment White Paper team at: firstname.lastname@example.org