How will the new Environment Bill affect my housing or development project?
The new Environment Bill will mandate for an increase, or “Net Gain”, in biodiversity across new developments. The existing metrics used to measure and monitor biodiversity are built on generalised assumptions of habitats, that in many cases, do not adequately take into account factors such as the wildlife that rely on them and regional variations in the habitats themselves.
The assumptions at the planning stage will risk the developer placing resources being into ineffective habitat “enhancements” that in reality, will add little true value to the biodiversity or the environment.
To maximise the benefits that biodiversity net gain can deliver for wildlife, homeowners, and developers, it will be crucial for these housebuilders and developers to work with skilled ecologists consultants, and suppliers to bring truly effective projects into reality.
What is Biodiversity Net Gain?
it will soon become an integral part of planning consent due to legislation changes proposed in the new Environment Bill. These changes include a mandatory Biodiversity Net Gain of 10% for most new developments.
Biodiversity Net Gain refers to an intervention that results in the net improvement to biodiversity for a defined area of land. An intervention is defined as a human-induced impact that results in a change to the type or condition of a habitat. Developing land or changing the way it is managed, are both examples of interventions.