Fersiwn Gymraeg ar gael yma.

If we get it right, a Green Recovery will benefit us all. We’ll have green jobs, sustainable housing, transport and energy. Our environment will have recovered, and nature will be thriving. Our health and well-being will have improved and we’ll all be more connected to nature. 

But what will it take to get us there and how do we avoid slipping back into old, unsustainable habits? We asked lots of people who have taken part in this week’s festival and this is what some of them said:

 Matt Rayment, economist

Invest £68 million in restoring and expanding habitats (woodlands, moorland, bogs, wetlands and coast) annually in Wales for next 10 years. This will create 1000 jobs, meet nature priorities, store carbon, strengthen natural capital and provide benefits for people and the economy.

Director for Woodland Trust Wales, Natalie Buttriss

Future farm support payments to include a universally available Hedges and Edges scheme which invests public funding in the green infrastructure of farms providing tangible direct support for farming with clear public benefits for wildlife, water resource management and carbon storage. 

First Minister for Wales Mark Drakeford

‘Focus on the ‘small things’ – so we all have nature on our doorstep that we can help to care for, that we value. Wildflower gardens, allotments, woodlands. So the shared commitment to the small things influences the big decisions we make.’ 

Director for RSPB Cymru, Katie-Jo Luxton

Set up a Green Workforce employability and training scheme to meet current unemployment needs, including by providing new training for young people as well as those recently unemployed in areas of work to help secure green jobs and contribute to the recovery of Wales’ natural habitat and a carbon-neutral economy. 

Future Generations Commissioner for Wales, Sophie Howe

'Support for a national housing retrofit programme. IWA’s Re-energising Wales project estimated an investment of £5 billion is needed over 15 years but would generate an increase in GVA to the Welsh economy of £2.2 billion, and savings of around £350 per household and approximately £67 million in savings to the health service.' 

Director of Black Mountains College, Ben Rawlence

If we want a greener future we must teach it. Nothing is more urgent than equipping future generations to meet the creative and adaptive challenges of a warmer, more uncertain planet. 

Rural Spokesperson for Plaid Cymru, Llyr Huws Griffiths MS

Set standards for carbon efficiency within public procurement to promote a greater use of low-carbon alternatives. Public bodies should also publish a register of where goods and services are sourced to help encourage greater local procurement and lowering food miles.

Director for CLA Wales, Nigel Hollett

Welsh Government’s Woodlands for Wales Strategy and current crisis provides opportunity to incentivise small scale woodland creation on less productive areas of Welsh farms. Supporting agro-forestry and managing existing woodland/forestry sustainably will aid climate mitigation and provide green materials for small scale housing developments.

Dr Ludivine Petetin, Cardiff University

We should build a holistic agri-food policy that is more democratic and multilevel in nature with emphasis on local, Welsh sustainable food production, employing local workers and encouraging the consumption of seasonal and healthy produce whilst maintaining food security. 

Wales Green Party Leader, Anthony Slaughter

A genuine Green New Deal is long overdue. We need a just and rapid transition to net zero with real investment in green jobs, infrastructure, and communities. The protection and restoration of nature and biodiversity must be a priority. 

Wales Real Food & Farming Conference and Food Manifesto Wales, Jane Powell

A Green Recovery must work for everybody. Our food system needs the co-operation and confidence of farmers, businesses, households and policy-makers, with achievable actions at all levels to educate and inspire knowledge of nature, food production & home-cooking, and support a healthy, diverse and resilient nation. 

Rural Affairs Spokesperson for Welsh Liberal Democrats, William Powell

A Green Recovery for Wales depends upon a radical shake up of the 2016 Planning Act Wales. In particular, the next generation of public infrastructure spend, schools, hospitals & public transport hubs, should be carbon neutral at least & carbon negative where possible

CEO for Food, Farming & Countryside Commission, Sue Pritchard

Everyone needs easy access to healthy, sustainably produced food. This is inextricably linked to decisions about health and well-being, farming, land use, nature recovery and the rural economy.  For a just transition, public investment must be lined up to deliver the ambitions of the Welsh legal framework. 

Chair of the Welsh Nature Friendly Farming Network, Hilary Kehoe

Maintain and redirect payments towards mainstreaming nature friendly farming: a new Wales agriculture policy should be centred on public money for public goods that rewards nature friendly farming and the multiple environmental benefits it provides. 

Organic Farmers & Growers Chief Executive, Roger Kerr

Investment is needed in agroecological research and development and Knowledge Exchange programmes. Long term costs, both socially and economically, will be significantly reduced by addressing our key challenges through support of farmers and businesses as they shift toward systems that are proven to be both diverse and robust. 

Rural Spokesperson for the Welsh Conservative Party, Andrew R T Davies MS

If we are to deliver a green economic recovery we have to take the people and communities on the journey. Welsh Conservatives would introduce a citizens’ assembly to ensure their voice is heard loud and clear. 

Head of Policy for Farmers’ Union of Wales, Nick Fenwick

Good habits developed against the tragic background of the pandemic need preserving through proactive interventions from the top. Press releases saying ‘buy local’ are meaningless if policies, red tape and costs hinder the Welsh food producer, small abattoir or village shop. 

Assistant Director for National Trust Wales, Rebecca Williams

“Our lives are overcrowded, over-excited, over-strained. We all want quiet. We all want beauty. We all need space.”  The words of National Trust founder Octavia Hill are as important today as they were 125 years ago. The Green Recovery must recognise that access to nature, beauty and history are essential for our wellbeing and need to be at the heart of future policy making.  

The festival may have come to an end, but it's still possible to view all of the discussions and seminars, download the activities and read our blog by goin on the Green Recovery Wales website.

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