Have your say on the Environment Act targets consultation

The government promised that our environment would be better for the next generation, and has now proposed legal targets to make sure this happens. Now’s your chance to tell it what you think.

We’ll be honest. We don’t think these proposals are great. This blog summarises why, and notes below explain more. And for full transparency, you can read the government’s proposals in its own words.

The government's running a public consultation through Defra (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs), so we’d like you to tell it how you feel and what you think. Why is it important to you that nature is better for the next generation, and do you think these plans do the job?

It's important that a lot of people respond to this consultation in their own words, to make it clear that we each care about the environment getting better.

We've set this form up to help you quickly and easily let the government know what you think about its plans.

  • Part 1 asks for your overall views
  • The next 4 parts give you a chance to give specific views on the 4 big problems these proposals are meant to fix: waste, air pollution, water pollution, and nature's decline. You can choose which areas to respond to.
  • The final steps ask for some personal details so that the government can count your response.
  • You’ll be able to view and edit your submission when you’ve finished, and add any further information. 
  • It will take about 5 minutes to complete the compulsory parts and roughly 5 minutes per optional part. Please make sure you click “Submit email” at the end so your submission is saved and counted. 
1 Intro
2 Plastics and waste
3 Clean air
4 Water
5 Nature
6 Closing
7 About You
8 Your email

Your response will appear at the top of your submission after “I understand that together, these targets are meant to lead to a better, healthier environment in the future”. You could start your answer with “In 15 years I want the environment to be...”

Not sure how to respond?

Use the pointers below for inspiration, but please don’t copy and paste these into your response, because Defra may not count duplicates.

This is Friends of the Earth's point of view. What do you think?

  • The government should be aiming much higher for the environment – not just making it OK in 15 years, but making it great, and certainly not worse.
  • These proposals avoid challenging problems that people really care about, like how to better protect protected sites on land, better measure species populations and tackle microplastics. In 15 years some things might be better, but others might not, or might be ruining it. What do you think is missing?
  • These plans are all too long term, and there isn’t enough information on what’s going to happen right now.
  • Some of these targets don’t provide enough detail to know what difference they’ll make to our environment. For example, one target talks about “wildlife-rich” areas, and another about “improving” measures of extinction risk, but there’s no definition for what these things mean.
  • It could cause problems that all these targets are set for different periods of time – some for 15 years’ time, some 20, some longer. And many of the targets use different years as their starting points, including one with a 2030 starting point.

Each area should take roughly 5 minutes to complete, and you can choose 1 or multiple.

Your email will be sent to the Defra consultation team. You’ll get a copy from us afterwards, and an email receipt from Defra when they get it.

Defra may contact you if they have any questions (they probably won’t) and we’ll email you an update when the government responds to this consultation.

  • jane k 26.06.2022 10:21
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