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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Brexit Hub Brexit

Environmental divergence: What could change after Brexit?

Environmental divergence: What could change after Brexit?

There are growing signs that the UK government is seeking to diverge from EU green rules after Brexit, with particular pressure to water down nature protections. But how feasible would such changes... Read more

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Environmental Politics

DEFRA’s new ministerial team: 9 things you need to know

It has been all change at DEFRA since Boris Johnson became prime minister in July. Here’s what you need to know about the department’s new ministerial team

Environmental Politics

Attenborough fronts economics of biodiversity review

Sir David Attenborough has been announced as the ambassador of a Treasury review into the economic benefits of biodiversity and the costs and risks linked to its continued decline

Land, Ecology & Development

Government halts HS2 ancient woodland clearances

High Speed Rail 2 (HS2) has been ordered to stop clearing ancient woodland, unless it is “absolutely necessary”, while a government commissioned review into the project’s future progresses

Land, Ecology & Development

RSK acquires contaminated land firm

Environmental and engineering consultancy RSK has acquired contaminated land specialist Ecologia in what will be its third acquisition in recent months


Environment minister Pow to take on waste, climate, nature briefs

Newly appointed junior environment minister Rebecca Pow will take on responsibility for climate adaptation, nature, water and waste, according to DEFRA


Land, Ecology & Development

‘The mother of all false economies’: Why the spending review spells trouble for Natural England

‘The mother of all false economies’: Why the spending review spells trouble for Natural England

The Treasury has handed DEFRA an extra £432m in its latest spending review but experts fear that very little will find its way to Natural England, which is bad news for domestic wildlife, developers and environmental consultants, finds Rachel Salvidge

Environmental Politics

Who is Rebecca Pow, DEFRA’s new junior environment minister?

In a mini DEFRA reshuffle prompted by Amber Rudd’s resignation, Boris Johnson has appointed Rebecca Pow as a junior environment minister. Here’s what you need to know about the department’s newest recruit

Land, Ecology & Development

Net gain: What DEFRA's new offsetting metric means for environmental consultants

The government has published a new tool to measure the value of habitat offsets, which consultants will need in order to demonstrate how biodiversity net gain can be achieved. James Agyepong-Parsons speaks to the experts in the field

Land, Ecology & Development

Net gain: What does a statutory biodiversity credit system mean for developers?

All new development in England will soon be required to offset any natural habitat that is damaged or destroyed, and if it cannot deliver this onsite or locally, developers will need to pay into a government-run system. James Agyepong-Parsons speaks to the experts about how this will work in practice

EIA Benchmarking Monitor Land, Ecology & Development

Has a farmer breached EIA rules by removing dry stone walls?

A farmer, accused of “industrial-scale environmental destruction” after clearing six miles of dry stone wall to create a ‘prairie’, is under investigation for a suspected breach of environmental impact assessment regulations. James Fair examines their value

Land, Ecology & Development

How are councils addressing the south coast nitrates crisis?

Planning permission for new houses in South Hampshire has all but ground to a halt following Natural England advice on the damaging impact of extra nitrates on protected sites. But councils are now proposing solutions. Simon Pickstone investigates

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