The Natural Environment Partnership is Buckinghamshire and Milton Keynes’ Local Nature Partnership. It brings together a diverse range of individuals, businesses and organisations to drive positive change for the local natural environment.
The NEP promotes the value of the natural environment in decision making at all levels and takes a strategic view to the challenges and opportunities facing nature. The NEP is working alongside the Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) and the health and wellbeing boards to embed natural environment in growth, economic & health strategies, and develop interventions and programmes for delivery.
In June 2011 the UK Government published their Natural Environment White Paper ‘The Natural Choice: securing the value of nature’, and announced the establishment of Local Nature Partnerships (LNPs) – a national network of LNPs to develop a vision for the local environment, champion its interests and better integrate environmental objectives with social and economic goals. A clear message of the White Paper is the need to work in a joined up, strategic way to help manage the natural environment. One way of achieving this is via LNPs, which can help the local area to manage the natural environment, and to embed its value in local decision making.
The Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) formally recognised the NEP as a LNP in June 2012. The NEP is one of 49 LNPs in England. The NEP is chaired by Chris M Williams, and includes Board members from the health, education and business sectors alongside local government, governmental and non-governmental environmental bodies.