Ed Sheeran has revealed plans to use his wealth to re-wild parts of the UK.
The songwriter's one-man-and-a-loop-pedal live show is relatively light in terms of personal packing, but Ed Sheeran's success still leaves a colossal carbon footprint.
Aware of this, the songwriter has confirmed he intends to buy vast parts of the UK and "rewind" them, in order to offset the environmental damage caused by his job.
“I’m trying to buy as much land as possible and plant as many trees as possible,” Ed Sheeran told BBC Radio London. “I am trying to rewild as much of the UK as I can. I love my county and I love wildlife and the environment.”
He added: “I feel like I am going to get my head bitten off anytime I say that, as my job is not a hugely sustainable job as I go and play in cities, but I am trying my best...”
Ed Sheeran's own East Suffolk estate is already being turned into a giant “wildlife meadow”, he explained.
He said: “I have got a massive beehive. I have this massive wildlife pond with newts in it, salamanders and there’s a grass snake that lives in there and hedgehogs...”
The songwriter finished: “The thing with sustainability and being a public figure is when people support it, suddenly people try and find things to call them out on.”
Which is exactly what has happened. While his heart may be in the right place, the combination of Britain's historically backward approach to land ownership and the prospect of a multi-millionaire absentee landlord replacing people with trees caused a huge pushback online:
“I’m trying to buy as much land as possible…”— Miriam Brett (@MiriamBrett) December 29, 2021
Ed Sheeran’s net worth is estimated to be £200m. Shoring up land he likely has no connection to feels like a personal project to offset his inevitably unjustifiably carbon intensive lifestyle. https://t.co/BPa8Gd6PQ5
Where would we all be without the super-rich offsetting their carbon-heavy opulent lifestyles in the countryside? https://t.co/VyQuw0sOMv— Joe Stanley (@JoeWStanley) December 29, 2021
Instead of buying up as much land as possible to plant trees. @edsheeran why not work with farmers to deliver climate and biodiversity solutions. You could have a much larger positive impact for your investment. #naturebasedsolutions #naturefriendlyfarming https://t.co/xCrvZu9JQN— Martin Lines (@LinesMartin) December 29, 2021
Wrong answer @edsheeran. The challenge for protecting #biodiversity and burying #carbon is to embrace #regenerativeagriculture on a massive scale not #wilding as #greenwashing https://t.co/tjO6R8zmIZ— Jamie Blackett (@Jamie_Blackett) December 29, 2021
Are his critics being fair, however? Ed Sheeran's plans haven't been put into practice yet, and his commitment to climate activism certainly puts him ahead of many of his peers.
Guess we'll have to wait and see on this one, folks!
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