Scotland’s Climate Week provides an opportunity for everyone to consider their role in responding to the global climate emergency. Simon Jones, director of conservation and visitor operations at the Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park, shares his views on how looking after nature is integral to tackling climate change.

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Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park is more than just a beautiful place. It contains vital natural tools we can use to tackle the global climate emergency and now nature conservation’s time has come.

If we invest in nature now, it will look after us forever.

Forests, peatlands and water are the big ones. These are the things that can soak up carbon, not just now but if looked after they will continue to do so for generations.

READ MORE: Loch Lomond's rainforest 'of global importance', says new report

Around 30 per cent of the National Park (52,300ha – equivalent to over 50,000 rugby pitches) is covered with trees, making our woodlands a fantastic resource in the fight against climate change.

And there’s still room for more. We are developing a Trees and Woodlands Strategy that will guide how trees are planted and maintained in the National Park, helping to make both the local area, and Scotland, more climate resilient.

The peatlands of the National Park also hold an estimated 20 million tonnes of carbon. Keeping peatlands healthy is especially important because if they are damaged they release greenhouse gases back in to the atmosphere.

Through our partnership with Peatland Action we’re aiming to restore 2,000 hectares of peatland by 2023 – that’s roughly 2,000 rugby pitches (or 810 football pitches if you prefer).

READ MORE: Loch Lomond area 'could help lead plants' fight against climate change'

The value of ‘blue carbon’ is also being recognised more and more too.

The plant communities on Scotland’s coasts hold vast amounts of carbon and we have sea lochs in the National Park that we know are important to protect, both to store carbon but to make sure they are resilient to climate change.

The National Park is ideally placed to be at the forefront of taking on this challenge. But we can’t do it alone. Together everyone can and must help fight climate change.

Follow what’s going on during Scotland’s Climate Week by checking out #ScotClimateWeek online or following @lomondtrossachs.

READ MORE: Check out all the latest Helensburgh and Lomond news stories here