The Westminster government has announced that the introduction of mandatory biodiversity net gain (BNG) in England has been delayed from November until January for larger sites developed through the town and country planning system, and April 2024 for small sites. BNG will not be mandatory for national infrastructure projects until 2025. The delay has not been welcomed by the many developers and councils that have been preparing for BNG for several years and was announced just as the State of Nature report showed a significant decline in biodiversity (see next article).

The BBC reports reactions, including

  • The Wildlife Trusts calling it “another hammer blow for nature”
  • The UK Green Building Council (UKGBC) saying it would “hurt green businesses and development”
  • Richard Benwell, CEO of environmental coalition group Wildlife & Countryside Link, said net gain had “already been pared back to the bare minimum to offset the habitat harm caused by new development”.

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