The Royal Botanic Gardens (RBG) in Kew, London, are under threat. Cuts in funding mean that up to 120 jobs could be lost.
This is a disaster for anyone involved in conservation and science. RBG holds what is possibly the most important herbarium (collection of dried plants) in the world, as well as a magnificent collection of living plants, a world class seed bank and other priceless collections and libraries. All these need proper curation and resourcing. And they also need to be used by scientists. If a nation can afford to spend hundreds of millions on armaments, surely it can afford a few million on maintaining a world class botanical resource.
At World Land Trust (WLT), we know how important the resources at Kew are. By permission of the Director of RBG, next month we are holding our 25th Anniversary Partners Symposium, in the Jodrell Building at Kew, which offers great facilities and an ideal location for such a gathering. Botanists from Kew will be able to meet with our partner representatives, and discuss future collaboration and research projects.
We in Britain often tell politicians in tropical countries that rainforests are an international heritage that they have a responsibility to conserve. In turn, we need to tell our own politicians that the Royal Botanic Gardens in Kew are an international heritage that Britain has a moral responsibility not only to conserve, but to continue to develop.
There is an online petition, please show your support.