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The environment is a capital resource that underpins much economic activity in the region. It is also one of the prime reasons for the high quality of life that people in the region value so highly. The environment supports the primary industries such as agriculture, forestry and mineral extraction, and is largely shaped and maintained by those industries. The quality of the environment is a significant driver for tourism as well as a powerful incentive for attracting new business.
In the South East, activities related to the environment are responsible for 230,000 jobs; thereby contributing to £7bn in GVA to the regional economy.
One key vehicle looking at the impact of environmental capital on the region is the 'South East England Biodiversity Forum'. It is an independent advisory group that was established in 1998 to champion biodiversity throughout the South East. There are currently more than 40 members – organisations that are committed to promoting the benefits of biodiversity across the region. The South East England Development Agency (SEEDA) is a pivotal Executive Group member of the Forum.
The Executive Group sets objectives and targets for biodiversity in addition to co-ordinating regional biodiversity monitoring. The overall aim is to raise awareness and understanding of the importance of biodiversity to people throughout the South East.
For further information, please send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Two recent articles on biodiversity from SEEDA's Chairman, Jim Brathwaite have appeared in 'South East Business' magazine. These can be accessed through this page.