If you follow me over on instagram or twitter you may have seen that I was in London this time last week, in Parliment to be more exact! I got asked to be one of Defra (The Department of Environment, Food, and Rural Affaird)'s #yearofgreenaction Ambassadors. It was a pretty exciting day and I got to meet not only the team at Defra, and industry leaders making changes, but some of the other ambassadors who are some amazing and inspiring people. And so I thought I'd stop by the blog and write about about my role as an Ambassador, what the #yearofgreenaction and Defra's 25 Year Environment Plan are, and introduce some of the other ambassadors.

Before I go into some of the details I just want to say how humbled and honoured I am to have been asked to be a part of this. I've been running this little blog for almost 6 years now and it's been all about ethics and sustainability for three of those. I can't post all the time because my degree gets in the way (as it should) but I do work hard on my little corner of the internet to promote sustainable living in a way that's practical. Now I get the chance to work with the government to help make it easier for people to make environmental changes in their lives. It's a platform that I want to use to do as much good as possible, and getting started working with Defra and the other Ambassadors is something I am really looking forward to!

Defra's 25 Year Enrivonment Plan.
The #yearofgreenaction, is a year of action in the second year of their 25 Year environment plan. This plan sets out to help the environment and people with 10 key areas:

  • Clean air
  • Clean and plentiful water
  • Thriving plants and wildlife
  • Reducing the risks of harm from environmental hazards
  • Using resources from nature more sustainably and efficiently
  • Enhancing beauty, heritage and engagement with the natural environment
  • Mitigating and adapting to climate change
  • Minimising waste
  • Managing exposure to chemicals
  • Enhancing biosecurity
There's a lot to this plan, as you can imagine, but already in their first year of the plan a lot has been done. Including the groundbreaking ban on micro-beads, ban on plastic straws, and more!

A lot of people don't necessarily have confidence in this plan, there's no legal binding to it and people don't trust the government to get it done. And to be honest I don't blame them, government isn't known for thinking over the long term. But I guess that's part of where us ambassadors come in. And where you do, we need to keep putting pressure on the government to change policy to better the environment and invest in schemes that will really help. The people I met on Tuesday all want to do good, want to see real change, and that's what the Year of Action is all about!

It's all about the every day actions that we can make to make the world a better place, it's about getting younger people out doors, not only so they learn to care for their environment but because it's good for their mental health. And it's about preserving nature, and the environment for the next generation to enjoy. 

Some of the other ambassadors include Besma from Curiously Conscious, Sian the CEO of Ethical Hour, Vicky Smith who runs the sustainable travel company Earth Changers and more! You can read about them and the #yearofgreenaction in the press release.

One thing I will say, as wonderfully inspiring as everyone is, I would love for Defra to expand their ambassador programme and become more diverse, getting non-white environmentalists involved too. It's amazing to see a range of ages and so many women involved, but there needs to be more racial diversity here I feel.

So, join me in holding MPs accountable for saving the environment, holding the government accountable for the promises they've made in this plan, to making small changes every day that can help the environment, to telling industry that they simply have to do more when it comes to the environment! So show what you're doing this year, and if there's anything you think could be done better, anything you think the government needs to step up on then tell me and tell them. Get your hands dirty in working to help the environment whatever way you can, whether it's planting wildflowers for the bees, taking your own bags shopping, avoiding plastic packed veg, and refusing to support companies not doing their bit for the environment. I will continue to share my tips on how you can help the environment so stay tuned for more of that!

If you want to know a little more there's a press release from our parliment meeting here, the 25 Year Environment Plan website, and the #Yearofgreenaction website. I will be sharing throughout the year (especially once I graduate in a few months) so you will hear from me very soon!