Make the Gwent Levels an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
Having saved the Gwent Levels from the threat of the M4 Relief Road, our challenge now is to bring in further protection for this extraordinary landscape. Originally reclaimed by the Romans, the Levels have for nearly two thousand years been a perfect example of sustainable development. The network of reens – or drainage ditches - keeps the land irrigated in dry times and flood-free in rainy times. Large areas of the Levels are designated as Sites of Special Scientific Interest, primarily for the rich aquatic life in the reens. But they’re also home to the rare shrill carder bee, to bitterns and cranes, as well as a wealth of plant life. Our campaign will focus on obtaining AONB status for the Levels – something that we will be doing in conjunction with other campaign groups and NGOs.
Prevent flooding - Take Action
One year ago, floods devastated many homes and businesses in Gwent and elsewhere across Wales. Although the emergency response and support for recovery was mostly excellent, it feels like the Welsh Government has given up on preventing further flooding. David Henshaw, Chair of Natural Resources Wales (NRW), wrote “we must all accept the inevitability that communities in Wales will flood again, and that the threat is likely to become more severe and more frequent”.
We do not accept that nothing can be done and we urge the Welsh Government to take urgent, bold and targeted action to protect people’s homes and livelihoods. People should not have to live in fear each time a storm is forecast.
M4 Relief Road Campaign – success!
The threat of the relief road carving up the Gwent Levels hung over Wales for more than thirty years. We campaigned against this on the grounds that it wouldn’t solve congestion (new motorways encourage more traffic); it was in direct contravention of the Welsh Government’s carbon targets; and it would destroy an area of internationally important biodiversity which has already been eaten away by thoughtless development.
And we won! Despite the Public Inquiry finding in favour of the road the First Minister had clearly been listening to the arguments put forward by the Green Party and other campaigning groups - as well as his own Future Generations Commissioner – and he concluded that this ill-conceived scheme had no place in 21st Century Wales.
"Gwent Greens are campaigning hard to make the world better for everyone. Every action, big or small, paves the way to a greener, fairer future for Gwent. Look out for ways to get involved!"
Lauren James, Deputy Leader, Wales Green Party