The RSPB was founded as a campaigning organisation, by women seeking to ban the trade in wild bird plumages for hats that was driving species to extinction in the late 19th century. It took the Society’s early campaigners 32 years to secure that first major victory, the Importation of Plumage (Prohibition) Act, and we’re still in it for the long haul today.
Our campaigns team is made up of Steven Roddy, Steph Landymore and Kim Matthews – our job is to help you get involved in influencing the decisions that affect the wildlife you care about. You can find out about our campaigns here, and on the campaigning web pages: https://ww2.rspb.org.uk/get-involved/campaigning/.
Want to hear all our latest campaigns news by email? Sign up to be an RSPB Campaign Champion: https://ww2.rspb.org.uk/get-involved/campaigning/become-a-campaign-champion/, and download our Guide to Campaigning to help with your own campaigns too.
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I don't know about you but 2016 hasn't always felt like the best of years, not least with the loss of so many well-loved names and faces. But it's worth taking a look back to remind ourselves that it hasn't all been bad. There have been some seriously good moments for nature, which would not have been possible at all without your support. From writing letters and emails to politicians, to tweeting and sharing campaign messages, all those actions can and do add up to making a real difference in the world. Let's take a look!
- Catfield Fen, the jewel in the Broads, is now safe from further water abstraction which was drying it out and impacting it's fragile, unique wildlife.
- Fracking is now banned from the surface of all protected areas in England and Wales.
- The West Pennine Moors are receiving extra protection through designation as a Site of Special Scientific Interest.
- The Nature Directives - the laws that protect our most important wildlife and wild places - were deemed fit for purpose, crucial for conservation and just need to be implemented better.
- Our Energy Vision report shows it is entirely possible for the UK to meet it's emission reduction targets in harmony with nature.
- The Albatross Task Force - responsible for reducing the accidental bycatch of albatrosses across the southern oceans by 99% - celebrate their 10th Anniversary
- The Scottish Government put forward a total of 15 marine sites for designation to protect seabirds
- RSPB Scotland and Scottish supporters took part in a mass lobby of Holyrood, alongside our partners at Stop Climate Chaos Scotland, to get climate on the political agenda.
- Puffin numbers on Lundy have rocketed - which is great news in a year when they were added to the Red Data List and one of their preferred food - sandeels - is struggling to adapt to climate change.
- An astonishing 2.2 million square kilometers of wildlife-rich ocean are now protected around UK Overseas Territories.
- 167 MPs have so far signed the Pledge for the Environment which calls for a thriving natural world
- In England and Scotland there has been confirmation of ongoing support for wildlife-friendly farming
- Cirl bunting numbers reach 1,078 pairs after 25 years of work to save them
- This year saw the passing of the Environment (Wales) Act in the Welsh Assembly which, alongside the Well-being of Future Generations Act passed last year, should see Wales moving towards being a more sustainable nation.
- The Scottish Government are allowing beavers to remain in Scotland, and will add them to the list of protected species.
- The Scottish Government are now also supporting peatland restoration with £400,000 of funding.
- In Northern Ireland, four new Marine Conservation Zones, which will protect vital areas for the conservation of a range of species, are announced.
It makes quite a list doesn't it! If that is not enough Martin Harper also wrote a highlights blog today, picking out his top 12 highlights from the year.
And if you need any more proof that 2016 has actually been a pretty good year, then check out this brilliant blog that looks at the global success stories of the year.
We hope you have a lovely Christmas and New Year, and here's to an equally successful 2017!
Kim, Ness, Steph and Steven - The Campaigns Team