Legislation and Survey Timetable
The summary below is intended as an introduction to current legislation. We have also included a survey timetable image as guidance for clients.
The UK has a number of animal and plant species which are legally protected. Some of these protected species are further covered by European legislation, whilst others are only protected within the UK.
European protected species are covered by the Habitats Regulations 2010, which incorporates the initial regulations in 1994 and their subsequent amendments, most significantly in 2007 and 2009.
For most other protected species, the most important legislation is the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, as amended.
Therefore local authorities have a responsibility to protect preserve and enhance biodiversity under the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act2006 (NERC) AND Planning Policy Statement 9 (PPS9):
- Department for Communities & Local Government Circular 06/2005 Biodiversity and Geological Conservation – Statutory Obligations and their Impact within the Planning System.
- National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF): Biodiversity and Geological Conservation – national planning policy relation to biodiversity. NPPF Biodiversity and Geological Conservation gives further direction with respect to biodiversity conservation and land use change/development. NPPF states that not only should existing biodiversity be conserved but importantly that habitats supporting such species should be enhanced or restored where possible. The policies contained within NPPF may be material to decisions on individual planning applications.
This is also required so that the local authority comply with the Habitats and Species Regulations 2010, and to have regard to the purpose of conserving biodiversity in the exercise of their functions (Natural Environment and Rural Communities (NERC) Act 2006).
The specific legislation which affects each species or groups of species is described within specific pages on our web site accessed by using the active words below:-