Tony Juniper Tony Juniper

Tony Juniper confirmed as chair of Natural England

Environment secretary Michael Gove has confirmed the appointment of leading environmentalist Tony Juniper as the new chair of England’s conservation regulator Natural England

Gove confirmed Juniper’s appointment as chair today. He will take up the role on the 23 April.

In a statement, Juniper, said: “Natural England’s vital role in defending and enhancing our nation’s natural environment has never been more important.

“As chair, my aim will be to celebrate, protect and deepen the impact of Natural England’s excellent work, not only for the sake of our wildlife and beautiful landscapes, but also for the huge benefits that our success brings for society.”

The Environment, Food and Rural Affairs committee and the Environmental Audit Committee supported the appointment of Juniper as Natural England chair following a public hearing held late last month.

Juniper is currently the executive director for advocacy and campaigns at WWF-UK and president of the Royal Society of Wildlife Trusts. He will be standing down from these positions once he takes up the Natural England role.

The select committees recommended that he also revoke his membership of the Green Party while he is Natural England’s chair due to the non-political nature of the role, something he confirmed he will do.

Gove named Juniper as his preferred candidate to lead Natural England last month.

Gove said: “Natural England has a key part to play in the government’s 25-Year Plan for the environment and ensuring we can protect nature for future generations.

“That is why I am looking forward to working with Tony as he leads the organisation and ensures Natural England can continue delivering the government’s environmental priorities.”

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