The term “rewilding” is a relatively new word, but it is fast becoming quite the talking point, considering the vast ecological destruction we find all around us.
Rewilding refers to reversing the destruction of the natural world, or in other words, a mass restoration of ecosystems. Ecosystems form the bedrock upon which all else grows and flourishes. We have all, whether knowingly or unknowingly, played a part in the destruction of these ecosystems. Rewilding is not just about ‘being better’ (such as recycling, driving less or using less plastic), but about actively reintroducing plant and animal life to restore what once was. To put it differently, it refers to reversing the loss of biodiversity.
We find ourselves in the shadowlands. A shadow of what nature once was. Rewilding offers us the opportunity to start restoring what was previously damaged. By aiding nature in her purpose, we enable natural processes to shape land and sea, repair damaged ecosystems and restore degraded landscapes. Through rewilding, nature’s natural rhythms create wilder, more diverse habitats (source).
George Monbiot (a British journalist known for his environmental activism) likens rewilding to bringing back wonder, thrill and enchantment. He speaks of the significant environmental and geographical change which results from the reintroduction of animals and plant life back into their rightful space. A restored ecosystem changes everything (you can watch his inspiring TED talk here).
The wonder of elephants in the bush, the beauty of a sunset, the relationship between giant whales and minute plankton corrected – nature can restore and heal. We believe this strongly. Rewilding brings back the mystery of ecosystems, the flourishing of our environment and the beauty of our surroundings.
This conviction offers us the chance to ‘rewild’ our own lives at the same time. Rewilding can be called the big brother of minimalism.
George Monbiot explains that we can easily become ecologically bored. We’ve prioritised safety over experience, yet we are able to experience a richer and rawer life than what is often led in most parts of the industrialised world. We can experience true adventure at the same time as defending the natural world around us.
We rely on the natural world for water, food and air – our most precious and necessary resources. When nature is healthy, we are healthier, and when we connect with nature, we’re left feeling happier too! Rewilding is about reconnecting a modern society – both rural and urban – with wilder nature. A space where everyone wins!
Dr Seuss. says it perfectly in his children’s book The Lorax: “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not”.