A year ago, things looked pretty grim for environmentalists. The prime minister seemed uninterested and, even though 80% of the UK’s environmental laws derive from the EU, the environment was not one of her 12 negotiating priorities for Brexit. Her over-powerful gatekeeper, Nick Timothy, a climate sceptic, was positively hostile to a green agenda. As for DEFRA, it was a political backwater, demoralised and understaffed. Things had been no better in David Cameron’s “get rid of all the green crap” final year in office.