10 key things that happened this week

Inchtavannach island is a European protected area and site of special scientific interest in Scotland. Photograph: Colin Kinnear/Geograph Inchtavannach island is a European protected area and site of special scientific interest in Scotland. Photograph: Colin Kinnear/Geograph

1 Nature regulator poisons 300 beech trees in protected area

The wildlife regulator Scottish Natural Heritage has ‘apologised unreservedly’ for poisoning 300 mature beech trees at a Loch Lomond beauty spot without the landowner's consent. MORE

2 Government releases heavily redacted fracking report after court order

The Cabinet Office has belatedly complied with a court order to publish a secret report on fracking written in 2016 that shows industry actors were more pessimistic about large-scale fracking in the UK than they had said in public. MORE

3 Oxford-Cambridge road link ‘has been cancelled’, says Conservative candidate

The Conservative candidate for Henley has said that the government has “cancelled” plans to build a controversial new road link between Oxford and Cambridge. MORE

4 Export restrictions force council to landfill 200,000 tonnes of waste

Around 200,000 tonnes of waste due to be shipped to the Netherlands for incineration will instead be landfilled near Colchester after Essex County Council was forced to rethink its entire waste strategy. MORE

5 DEFRA biodiversity indicators reveal precipitous decline in protected species

The condition of important species and habitats protected under the Habitats Directive is deteriorating dramatically, according to revisions to DEFRA’s biodiversity indicators, published this week. MORE

6 Court dismisses nitrogen challenge to release of green belt land

The High Court has rejected a challenge against proposed green belt developments that claimed the local authority had failed to properly consider the impact of additional nitrogen pollution on a special protected area. MORE

7 Air pollution: 4 newly discovered links to ill-health

New research links air pollution to blindness, septicaemia, kidney failure and poorer thinking has been published. MORE

8 New rules on tagging invasive birds equate to death sentence, warns expert

The British Trust for Ornithology has told its members they must avoid tagging invasive species such as the Egyptian goose, following new legislation which prevents them from being released after capture, effectively equating to a death sentence for the bird, according to an environmental campaigner. MORE

9 EU emissions trading: Judge rejects challenge to suspension of free allowances

A judge has rejected a challenge to the UK government’s decision not to support an oil and gas company affected by the suspension of its free emissions allowances for the EU emissions trading system in the run-up to Brexit. MORE

10 Scotland’s national nature reserves valued at £683m

Scottish Natural Heritage’s national nature reserves are worth £683m with annual benefits of £28m every year, according to a first-of-its-kind natural capital valuation. MORE