Biospheres aim to inspire a positive future by connecting people, economies and nature today.
Challenges: The Fens face an uncertain future – the need to deal with changes associated with climate change – sea level rise, peat loss, water scarcity – and population growth, the fragility of some of our more vulnerable wildlife areas and the increasing need to find sustainable solutions to feeding and housing us all mean we must find joint solutions which deliver the best possible environmental outcomes coupled with a good quality of life.
Opportunities: there are lots….
Nature: The fens contains large areas of lowland wetland with unique and internationally significant wildlife. These can be built upon and extended via new green networks to enhance the wildlife in the area and provide increased recreation and tourist opportunities.
Farming: The fens is nationally important for food production and is worth £3.1 billion to the East Anglian economy. Farmers are experts at managing the land and there are strong agri-tech and food supply businesses in the area. This makes the fens ideally situated for demonstrating new farming crops, techniques and technologies.
Water resources: The fens relies upon excellent water management – striking a balance between draining the land for agriculture and protecting homes and supplying enough water for farming and drinking. There is currently new interest in adopting larger, landscape approaches to managing water resources and the fens is an ideal region to demonstrate how this could work to mitigate against the effects of climate change and population growth.
Innovation: The economic, academic and technological powerhouse of Cambridge and Peterborough are nearby and can provide new ideas and technologies through scientific research and development which can be tested locally, in real life situations.
Climate change: There is increasing public and government interest in addressing the challenges of climate change, the preservation of our precious resources such as peat and water and the increasing difficulties of finding a balanced way to feed and house everyone. This is the right time to start looking at how everyone can play a part in preserving our natural resources and our natural world for the future.