Environmental Politics

‘Back off’: ministers told Natural England to drop review of bird kill licences ...

‘Back off’: ministers told Natural England to drop review of bird kill licences

A 2014 review of general bird kill licences was dropped after DEFRA ministers put pressure on Natural England to “back off”, according to the deputy chair of Natural England

Latest Analysis

Legislation

Could net-zero carbon halt Heathrow expansion?

Could net-zero carbon halt Heathrow expansion?

The government has admitted that building a third runway at Britain’s largest airport may be incompatible with achieving net-zero carbon by 2050. Gareth Simkins looks into the implications

Land, Ecology & Development

Necessary works: how a county council justified the destruction of 17,000 rare orchids

Necessary works: how a county council justified the destruction of 17,000 rare orchids

A council claims the ‘devastating’ destruction of thousands orchids was the unfortunate consequence of a drainage works project, but the local wildlife NGO says the affair was bungled. Adam Branson reports

Parliament Brexit Hub

European elections: Who’s who on environmental policy

European elections: Who’s who on environmental policy

With the European elections fast approaching, Simon Pickstone looks at where some of the UK's top candidates stand on environmental issues

Carbon trading

How a government bailout saved British Steel from a £500m environment fine

How a government bailout saved British Steel from a £500m environment fine

British Steel found itself in some serious financial trouble last week, without ready means to pay a massive emissions trading liability. Gareth Simkins looks into why the government had to step in

Land, Ecology & Development

Why MPs believe the Japanese knotweed threat is being overplayed

Why MPs believe the Japanese knotweed threat is being overplayed

An inquiry has found that the effects of Japanese knotweed have been exaggerated and are unduly hindering property sales and undermining their value. Conor McGlone investigates

Energy

What does ‘net-zero by 2050’ mean for big industry?

What does ‘net-zero by 2050’ mean for big industry?

The government’s climate change advisers say the lion’s share of greenhouse gas cuts can be achieved through existing technologies. Isabella Kaminski looks at what this means for heavy industry

Latest news

Environmental Politics Brexit Hub

‘Lipstick on a pig’: MPs and green groups savage green Brexit proposals

Theresa May’s pledge to maintain environmental standards after Brexit as part of a new Brexit proposal to be put before parliament has caused outrage among green campaigners

Unconventional oil & gas

Cuadrilla warned for releasing tonnes of methane

Fracking firm Cuadrilla Resources has breached three of its environmental permitting conditions, according to an Environment Agency (EA) audit of its Preston New Road shale gas exploration site

Waste

Waste sector denies link between rise in EfW and recycling slump

Representatives of the waste industry have told a cross-party bench of MPs that there is no connection between soaring energy-from-waste levels and low recycling rates

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Editor's pick

Regulation

The firms that took on the EA and won

The firms that took on the EA and won

How did the handful of businesses that have overturned Environment Agency permitting decisions manage to succeed at appeal?

Biodiversity / conservation

Interview: What Chris Packham thinks about bird killing, net gain and Michael Gove

The Springwatch presenter is fronting an initiative which aims to ensure environmental regulators are upholding the law. Who is in its crosshairs?

Climate change

Climate emergency! How frustrated councils are taking matters into their own hands

Inspired by grass-root campaigns, town halls across the UK have declared there’s a climate emergency. But what are they doing about it and how will it affect environmental professionals?

Industrial emissions

Why medium combustion plants are starting to feel the heat

With around 34,700 medium combustion plants operating in the UK, the impacts of new EU rules limiting emissions of certain pollutants into the air from such plants are already being felt

Parliament Brexit Hub

'Too much wriggle room', 'Absurd caveat' – MPs and peers set out their Environment Bill green lines

As pre-legislative scrutiny of the draft Environment Bill gets under way, some MPs and peers have already set their own ‘green lines’. Where will the flashpoints arise?

Case studies

Recycling

The debrief: How one Gloucestershire council turned around its recycling performance

The debrief: How one Gloucestershire council turned around its recycling performance

Stroud District Council almost doubled its recycling rate in two years. Could its strategy be replicated elsewhere and used to reverse a nationwide stagnation?

Biodiversity / conservation

The debrief: How a district licensing scheme is raising funds from developers to protect newts

One Midlands scheme aims to show that with the right strategy and people in place, district licensing can throw off the ‘licence to trash’ label

Land, Ecology & Development

The debrief: Inside a council’s pioneering biodiversity net gain planning policy

In 2016 Lichfield District Council introduced a policy requiring a 20% biodiversity net gain on developments. How has the approach worked out?

Land, Ecology & Development

The debrief: How Sussex farmers have made a return to nature pay

Cited in the government’s 25-Year Environment Plan, the Knepp Estate in Sussex has allowed free-roaming animals to shape the land into a mix of habitats. James Fair reports on this pioneering project

Environmental management systems

The debrief: How compostable bags are helping a retailer cut its plastics use

Co-op is offering compostable carrier bags at 1,000 stores, but barriers may prevent wider take-up. Conor McGlone visits the Italian facility that supplies the new biodegradable bags to the retailer

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