Ecological Management: Management Plans & Ecological Solutions
Due to the ever increasing amount of protection for British wildlife, mitigation, compensation and enhancements to a site are often required to allow planning permission of a proposed development to proceed and to 'put something back' where an existing habitat is likely to be affected, particularly if protected species are a potential risk (e.g. bats, great crested newts etc.).
Aether Ecology provides advice on mitigation that may need to be incorporated into your development plans following a wildlife survey. For developments where protected species such as bats are present, mitigation and compensation advice must be provided by a Natural England licensed worker.
WHY IS MITIGATION / COMPENSATION REQUIRED?
Ecological surveys for plants and / or animals may be required as part of a planning condition. This specialist advice will inform the client of any potential risks from conflicting with wildlife and wildlife law. The UK is committed to conserving biodiversity and many UK wildlife species are protected from harm and disturbance under various UK and European law and legislation. In order to circumvent the these, a European Protected Species (EPS) licence is necessary to make an otherwise illegal activity, legal.
For an EPS licence to be granted, ecological mitigation and compensation measures must be ensured prior to the development to minimise any detrimental influence a development may have on that species or population. UK planning guidance, Planning Policy 9 (PPS9) also directs nature conservation to be a material consideration in determining planning applications. This is used to help planners promote opportunities to restore and enhance the value to the native wildlife of a site.Wildlife mitigation / compensation in therefore an essential element in most development projects.
WHAT TYPES OF MITIGATION / COMPENSATION DO I REQUIRE?
Removing wildlife to a different location.
Mitigation / Compensation may include a variety of measures such as:Timing of works at a specific time of year to avoid disturbing or harming wildlife.
Providing alternative suitable habitat elsewhere on site for the benefit of wildlife.
Incorporating areas within the development for the benefit of wildlife.
The type of mitigation / compensation required is dependant upon the existing site conditions, the species involved, the geographical location and scope of the proposed development.
ECOLOGICAL MANAGEMENT PLANS (EMP)
Where a proposed development is likely to affect the local, regional or national wildlife of an area, an EMP can provide sound ecological advice to create the best possible outcome for wildlife within the constraints of the development.
EMPs are commonly used during BREEAM and Code for Sustainable Homes Assessments where evidence is required to show the commitment of the development to wildlife protection and enhancement.