Sometimes you just need space to think.
If Transport Secretary Justine Greening needs a little time to reflect on the big decisions that she needs to make about the UK's future aviation capacity, she should go for a walk in a flower-rich meadow. Last week I was reminded of a paper by Sheffield scientists and published here. They concluded that psychological benefits increase with species richness ie the more species, the better your brain works!
Now, I know that our meadows are not at their best at this time of year, but I am sure that the research could be applied to species other than flowers. If so, perhaps the Transport Secretary should pop up to the Lodge (pictured below courtesy of Jesper Mattias rspb-images.com) where last week we reported that a staggering 1,915 native species had been reported at our headquarters. Last year’s total brings the list of native and non-native species recorded at the site to 4,035 - the third highest RSPB nature reserve for the number of species recorded.
So, if officials are reading this, can I suggest you find some time in the Secretary of State's diary to visit the Lodge? It will help her take time to reflect on the draft aviation white paper. She could always pop in for a chat with a few RSPB colleagues to hear what we think about the proposal for a Thames Estuary Airport. We spend a lot of time at the Lodge benefiting from all that species richness - so we are worth talking to.
Alternatively, why not schedule an hour recording birds in her garden this weekend? That should do the trick because, yes, it's Big Garden Birdwatch this weekend!
Where do you go to reflect on life? Are you taking part in Big Garden Birdwatch this weekend? If not, why not?
It would be great to hear your views.
Hi Martin, it has to be said that most of our reflection is done on the North Kent Marshes and that our thoughts are preoccupied with saying NO to a Thames estuary airport. We too hope that Justine Greening takes you up on your kind offer and that she pops into the Lodge for a chat. We know from past experience - the successful No Airport at Cliffe campaign - that the RSPB (the real experts on the Thames estuary) can explain just how important the Thames estuary is for wildlife and for people and that it most certainly is not the place for a new hub airport.
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