John Griffiths, Minister for Environment and Sustainable Development
I would like to inform Assembly Members that I am today making £1 million available for Ecosystem Resilience and Diversity projects. This funding builds on the success of last years Ecosystem Resilience, Diversity and Compliance fund, and seeks to deliver healthy ecosystems in Wales, utilising the approach outlined in the current ‘Sustaining a Living Wales’ consultation.
Wales' environment is facing increasing pressures from the changing climate that make water management more challenging including issues of scarcity and increased likelihood of flooding. There are also complex multiple pressures from our modern uses of land that are leading to poor soil and water quality and increased pressure on species and habitats.
To tackle these challenges we need to make sure we are managing our natural resources as a whole. We need to understand how we obtain the services we need while sustaining a resilient and healthy environment.
Maintaining healthy ecosystems is less expensive than treating problems later on. For example, good land management in river catchments can keep water clean and reduce flooding. Well-functioning ecosystems will be more resilient to climate change and extreme weather events.
The Ecosystem resilience and diversity fund will again be focused on delivering better outcomes for habitats, species and tackling the issue of invasive non-native species, within this wider context. It will be delivered in partnership with the Countryside Council for Wales and the Wales Biodiversity Partnership.