THERE is little ambiguity about the state of nature in Scotland.

The report published by more than 70 organisations, including the Scottish Wildlife Trust, clearly shows the problems facing the nation’s wildlife.

In the past 25 years alone, nearly half of our species have seen a decline. One in nine are threatened with extinction. Without the thousands of people and organisations who are already working to conserve nature, this picture would undoubtedly be much worse.

READ MORE: State of Nature Scotland report reveals 'rapid' wildlife changes

The situation is made even more acute when you consider that we also face a climate emergency. Nature plays a key role in regulating our climate, and many of our most important wildlife habitats also act as critical banks of carbon.

Continuing to allow things to deteriorate at the current rate will make it all the more difficult to meet our ambitious new targets to reduce emissions.

Scotland is uniquely well placed to invest in nature. We have a number of natural advantages, with 11% of Europe’s coastline, 13% of the world’s blanket bog, and an incredible 90% of the UK’s fresh water. We have to act quickly to support nature’s recovery, by creating new woodlands and wetlands, restoring our marine environment and peatlands, and by making our towns and cities greener.

This recovery will take detailed strategic planning. The Infrastructure Commission for Scotland has already been tasked with developing a new 30-year strategy for Scotland’s communications and transport systems. We believe the same strategic approach should be applied to vital investment in our natural infrastructure. This requires a new partnership that combines the expertise of the Infrastructure Commission with that of Scottish Natural Heritage.

Nature is our life support system.

We owe it to future generations to invest in its recovery and ensure we have a robust plan to address climate change.

Jo Pike is the chief executive of the Scottish Wildlife Trust