Cornwall Council is drawing up proposals to boost private investment into nature and climate change initiatives after a £1m government cash injection.

The council is one of four local authorities across the country to receive funding through the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs’ Local Investment in Natural Capital (LINC) programme.

The two-year programme will be delivered in partnership with the Environment Agency to test ways to attract investment into local priorities for nature and climate such as creating and restoring habitats, capturing carbon and improving access to nature. 

Cornwall’s cabinet member for environment and climate change, Cllr Martyn Alvey, said:

“We were invited to bid for this funding as part of our asks in the Devolution Deal for support to leverage private finance into protecting and enhancing nature.

“This funding will give us a head start in developing a trailblazing approach to implementing our Local Nature Partnership Investment Programme to meet our target of 30 per cent of our land, rivers and seas being well managed for nature by 2030.

“Meeting this challenge will require significant local and national investment. The funding creates an opportunity to unlock new sources of funding to support Cornwall’s ambitions.

“We will be devising a local investment approach, analysing project proposals, offering support to partners, farmers and landowners in developing viable proposals and coordinating support to get nature recovery projects ‘investment ready’ for private finance.”

Lord Robin Teverson, Chair of the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Nature Partnership, said:

“Great news that Cornwall has once again been chosen to spearhead a really important area of environmental innovation.  

“It’s another opportunity to boost nature, mend our environment, and prepare for climate change.  This funding really can make a difference, and there will be much to learn.”

Environment Secretary, Thérèse Coffey MP, said:

“We need a healthy and thriving natural environment to meet our Net Zero goals and build our resilience to climate change. 

“Our announcement today sends a signal that the opportunities from investing in our farmland, forestry, peatlands and marine areas are great and offer long term rewards for people and nature.”

Alan Lovell, Chair of the Environment Agency, said:

“The appetite to invest in nature exists, and the Green Finance Strategy and the Nature Markets Framework will help unlock that potential and develop markets for a greener UK.

 “The Environment Agency is working with government to support private sector investment in climate adaptation and nature recovery, including through the Natural Environment Investment Readiness Fund. Financing work like nature-based flood alleviation schemes will help us reduce the economic costs of climate impacts in the coming decades.”