£40 million second round of Green Recovery Challenge fund opens

Grants of up to £2 million each as part of the Green Recovery Challenge fund are now available to help the nation build back greener from the coronavirus pandemic, the government announced today (Tuesday, March 9).

The second round of the Green Recovery Challenge fund will award up to £40 million in grants to environmental charities and their partners across England to create and retain jobs while restoring nature and tackling climate change.

All projects must contribute to at least one of the following themes of the Green Recovery Challenge Fund:
  • Nature conservation and restoration;
  • Nature-based solutions, particularly focused on climate change mitigation and adaptation;
  • Connecting people with nature.

Almost £40 million was awarded in November in the first round to 68 projects that will help to restore damaged habitats such as moorlands, wetlands and forests – which will see over 800,000 trees planted.

The projects will also support conservation work and help to improve education about the environment.

Kickstarting projects

Environment Minister Rebecca Pow said:

“I am delighted to launch the second round of the Green Recovery Challenge Fund to help kickstart more projects to restore nature, tackle climate change, and create and retain thousands of jobs as society comes together for our planet.

“This is more important than ever as we build back greener from the coronavirus pandemic.

In the first round, we awarded grants across a broad variety of environmental projects, ranging from planting trees, and restoring peatlands to connecting people with green spaces, forests and protected landscapes. I encourage more organisations to apply so we can continue to make a real difference.

The fund will be delivered by the National Lottery Heritage Fund in partnership with Natural England, the Forestry Commission and the Environment Agency.

Ros Kerslake, chief executive, National Lottery Heritage Fund, said:

“We are delighted to be working with Defra once again to ensure that the nature and environment sector receives this further support from the Green Recovery Challenge Fund.

“It is vital that we build a pipeline of green projects that protect and enhance our beautiful countryside and wildlife, create jobs, and positively impact on our wellbeing.”