Land, Ecology & Development

The latest land, ecology and development news, analysis, best practice, data and insight, covering planning and land use, biodiversity, contaminated land, environmental assessment, protected areas and transport

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Biodiversity / conservation

How red kites paved the way for rewilding

How red kites paved the way for rewilding

As the UK celebrates the 30th anniversary of the first red kite reintroductions, the programme is still influencing conservation policy, finds Catherine Early

Latest news

Climate change

Net zero: Tree planting plans undermined by peatland emissions

Carbon emissions from the UK’s degraded peatlands threaten to outstrip the extra carbon absorbed by swathes of new woodland that the government intends to plant, according to an analysis by CPRE, the countryside charity

Land, Ecology & Development

Farm building logjam in protected sites cut in half as ammonia limits rolled back

A backlog of farming planning applications in Northern Ireland has been cut in half after an agriculture minister advised planning authorities to base applications on old aerial ammonia limits, despite evidence showing EU-protected sites are awash with excess nutrient pollution

Planning & land use

‘Developers’ charter’: Green groups slam planning white paper

The government says its planning white paper, published this week, will help the UK build its way out of the Covid-19 crisis by 'streamlining and modernising the planning process', but green groups have slammed the proposals

Planning & land use

Government unveils ‘once in a generation’ overhaul of planning system

All new homes built in England will be zero-carbon ready and green spaces will be protected with more building allowed on brownfield land, according to government proposals

Land, Ecology & Development

‘Ground-breaking decision’: beavers cleared to remain in Devon

DEFRA has said a population of European beavers can remain after being reintroduced successfully into a Devon river and will consult on a national programme for the species

Analysis

Land, Ecology & Development

Why Natural England’s net gain calculator may struggle to accurately value nature

Why Natural England’s net gain calculator may struggle to accurately value nature

The flaws in the biodiversity net gain calculator have all been corrected, says Natural England, but will its official launch later this year satisfy everyone? James Agyepong-Parsons reports

Brexit Hub Agriculture & forestry

Interim National Food Strategy: 5 things it says about green issues

Food entrepreneur Henry Dimbleby has set out recommendations on how the government should support environmental standards in the food system as the end of the Brexit transition period approaches. ENDS takes you through what you need to know

Regulation

How lockdown has changed the UK’s environmental regulators

Regulators had to adapt to new working conditions during lockdown and while some aspects were challenging, others were improved, prompting them to consider changing the way they work permanently. David Burrows reports

Planning & land use

Policy briefing: Prepare for environmental checks on lapsed planning consents

An ‘additional environmental approval’ process under a new planning bill could impose new EIA and habitats regulation assessment obligations on lapsed planning permissions

Brexit Hub Environmental Law

Has Eustice fired the starting gun on a ‘deregulatory race to the bottom’?

The environment secretary has set out plans to overhaul the EIA regime and ditch elements of EU green law, following Boris Johnson’s announcement that he intends to ‘scythe through red tape’ and build the country out of its economic slump, a move which has elicited fears for the future of green protections. Rachel Salvidge reports

EIA Benchmarking Monitor Planning & land use

Brave newt world: What does Boris Johnson have planned for species protections?

The prime minister is set to overhaul planning rules this month, singling out species licensing as a drag on the system, but government remains tight-lipped on what changes to environmental protections may arrive in the new year. Adam Branson reports

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