Last-minute changes to new regulator’s role

Natural Resources Wales will replace the three Welsh environment regulators in April but its functions are yet to be finalised.

The Welsh government is making last-minute changes to the new single regulator for Wales following concerns that its duties on nature were too weak and its arrangements for consulting itself were unlawful.

Stronger conservation duties and clearer rules on transparency and internal consultation were set out in a 15 November draft order defining the functions of the new body, named Natural Resources Wales on 25 October.1

The changes were made in response to concerns raised by several groups including the Countryside Council for Wales (CCW) which, along with Environment Agency Wales and Forestry Commission Wales, will be subsumed by the new regulator next April.

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