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The impact of the Covid-19 lockdown on the human experience of nature

Abstract : The Covid-19 pandemic has resulted in extensive lockdowns implemented all around the world and billion of people have been asked to stay at home for several weeks. Although this global confinement has had potentially huge unintended consequences on the environment and on its associated wildlife, this study shows that it has also impacted the human experience of nature. Based on an online questionnaire, this study aims to assess how the significant changes in people's everyday lives induced by the French lockdown impacted their relationship with other species. Participants did not only observe and interact more with non human species, but also discovered new traits characterizing them, and felt less lonely thanks to them. The impact of the lockdown was stronger on people's relationship with their pets, farm animals, home plants and with birds than with other plants and animals. This study further demonstrates that participants with different profiles have been affected differently. In particular, women and people with better access to nature were clearly more sensitive to changes and have been more positively impacted in their relationships with other species. Acting as a real world experiment, the lockdown reveals to which extent our experience of nature is embedded in social, cultural and political contexts.
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Contributor : Emilie Gil Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Wednesday, September 22, 2021 - 8:09:24 AM
Last modification on : Thursday, September 23, 2021 - 3:30:18 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Thursday, December 23, 2021 - 6:13:41 PM


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Ruppert Vimal. The impact of the Covid-19 lockdown on the human experience of nature. Science of the Total Environment, Elsevier, 2022, 803, pp.149571. ⟨10.1016/j.scitotenv.2021.149571⟩. ⟨hal-03347408⟩



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