Skip to main content

31 August 2020

+ 76% appreciated an increase in wildlife during lockdown

 + 75% of Scots want more green spaces available across Scotland  

+ 71% of people used greenspaces more during lockdown 

More than three quarters of people in Scotland appreciated access to wildlife during lockdown, according to new figures published today (Mon 31 Aug). [1]

The survey commissioned by WWF Scotland shows the majority of people appreciated having access to green spaces and experiencing nature during lockdown, with 76% agreeing that green spaces had been important to them during lockdown and 70% saying they would like to have more green spaces near them.  75% of people said they wanted to see more green spaces accessible across Scotland as a whole.   

Research has shown that during lockdown those living in more deprived areas had less access to gardens and green spaces [2].  This is of concern as multiple studies show the benefits of being in nature to physical and mental wellbeing. [3] 

With the current climate and biodiversity crises affecting species, habitats and landscapes here in Scotland and around the globe, the survey found people in Scotland showed great concern for our natural world. Almost three-quarters of those asked (74%) said the Scottish Government should take decisive action to tackle the nature and climate emergencies on a similar scale taken to tackle the COVID-19 crisis. 

Lang Banks, director at WWF Scotland said: 

“These findings make it clear that nature is a boost to people’s wellbeing and that the majority of people in Scotland really valued having the opportunity to get out into nature during lockdown. Sadly, we know that not everyone has access to greenspace, with people living in the most deprived areas less able to enjoy nature close to home. It’s in all our interests that everyone is afforded the chance to enjoy easy access to greenspaces and more nature. 

 “That’s why our recent Nature Recovery Plan, [4] produced jointly with RSPB Scotland and the Scottish Wildlife Trust, calls for a change to planning policy, ensuring that new developments enhance and make space for nature and that habitats across Scotland are better managed and better connected. We need the places we live and work to support our collective wellbeing where people and nature can thrive.” 

Notes to Editors 

[1] Opinion Matters conducted an online survey with a representative sample of 1,250 adults aged  16+ in Scotland. The research fieldwork took place from 20th- 27th July 2020. Data are weighted to match the profile of the population. 

To what extent do you agree or disagree with the following statements?  

  

Total number of respondents 

  

  

1250 

Statement 

  

Base 

Percentage 

  

Strongly agree 

516 

41.30% 

  

Somewhat agree 

428 

34.20% 

Local greenspace has been important to me during lockdown 

Neither agree nor disagree 

232 

18.60% 

  

Somewhat disagree 

63 

5.00% 

  

Strongly disagree 

11 

0.90% 

  

  

  

  

  

Strongly agree 

454 

36.30% 

  

Somewhat agree 

436 

34.90% 

I have used local greenspace more because of lockdown 

Neither agree nor disagree 

262 

21.00% 

  

Somewhat disagree 

79 

6.30% 

  

Strongly disagree 

19 

1.50% 

  

  

  

  

  

Strongly agree 

437 

35.00% 

  

Somewhat agree 

434 

34.70% 

I would like there to be more greenspace near me 

Neither agree nor disagree 

304 

24.30% 

  

Somewhat disagree 

66 

5.30% 

  

Strongly disagree 

0.70% 

  

  

  

  

  

Strongly agree 

499 

39.90% 

  

Somewhat agree 

442 

35.40% 

More greenspace should be made available across Scotland 

Neither agree nor disagree 

245 

19.60% 

  

Somewhat disagree 

52 

4.20% 

  

Strongly disagree 

12 

1.00% 

  

  

  

  

  

Strongly agree 

487 

39.00% 

  

Somewhat agree 

464 

37.10% 

I have appreciated the increase in wildlife during lockdown 

Neither agree nor disagree 

240 

19.20% 

  

Somewhat disagree 

52 

4.20% 

  

Strongly disagree 

0.60% 

  

  

  

  

  

Strongly agree 

412 

33.00% 

  

Somewhat agree 

507 

40.60% 

The Scottish Government should take decisive action to tackle the climate and nature crises on a similar scale of the action taken to tackle the COVID-19 crisis 

Neither agree nor disagree 

242 

19.40% 

  

Somewhat disagree 

71 

5.70% 

  

Strongly disagree 

18 

1.40% 

 [2] BMJ opinion https://blogs.bmj.com/bmj/2020/07/03/covid-19-has-highlighted-the-inadequate-and-unequal-access-to-high-quality-green-spaces/ 

 [3] Nature journal Spending at least 120 minutes a week in nature is associated with good health and wellbeing https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-019-44097-3  

[4] A Nature Recovery Plan - 11 transformation actions for nature in Scotland.  Joint report with RSPB Scotland and Scottish Wildlife Trust https://www.wwf.org.uk/sites/default/files/publications/Aug20/Nature_Emergency_Report.pdf

[5] State of Nature 2019 report https://www.rspb.org.uk/our-work/state-of-nature-report/

Was this page useful?

no

How can we improve this page? (optional)