Today is Earth Day, when people around the world celebrate our natural environment and demonstrate their support for protecting it.
During the coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown, I have been using my Government-recommended daily exercise to enjoy our local green spaces.
Some of us may have found new parks or fields near our homes that we have never been to before, or simply gained a new appreciation for the surroundings around us.
These green spaces are so important, as they provide us with many mental and physical health benefits. Alongside the fresh air and exercise, spending time in nature has been shown to improve your mood and reduce stress.
A lot has happened since Earth Day in 2016, when the landmark Paris Agreement on climate change was signed. In the last month alone, many of us have found that our appreciation for local green spaces has grown significantly, and according to one recent opinion poll, over a quarter of us have noticed more wildlife.
This Earth Day I am celebrating nature in Crawley and our local green spaces. We should continue to protect and enhance these places which we have come to value even more in these difficult times.
Henry Smith MP