Evan Bowen-Jones & Kent Wildlife Trust - causes of optimism
My latest conversation on the All Bases Covered podcast is with Evan Bowen-Jones, CEO of the Kent Wildlife Trust.
We recorded it at the trusts HQ at Tyland Barn near Maidstone, in a slightly echoey room, on the 7th November 2022. Its an extensive ramble of a conversation, starting with the fact that global leaders are gathering for COP27 in Egypt to talk about climate change amid concerns that it may already be too late for the world to reduce CO2 emissions enough to stay within the 1.5c global warming limit – and we may even pass it in the next decade, let alone by 2050.
We talk about Wilding and Rewilding and the difference between the two, and the release of wild bison into the Blean woodland near Canterbury.
Evan talks about the need for government regulation and public subsidy to help landowners and farmers engage in good countryside management as well as food production, so that marginal land isn't needlessly ploughed up or set to pasture for little if any gain to humanity, but with serious consequences for wildlife.
He was inspired to become a conservationist after watching David Attenborough's Life on Earth as a child, and talks about being fortunate enough to have spoken with him on several occasions – and we both have a bit of a fanboy moment together over meeting David Attenborough, who is a strong candidate for Greatest Living Human.
Despite the huge concerns over the current state of the environment, Evan remains optimistic for the future, and hopeful that with enough efforts now Kent, and indeed the UK, will have significantly more wildlife in it in 50 years time than we have today - which I find to be really heartening.
I hope you enjoy our conversation.