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Getting our (native) ducks in a row

Event date: May 05, 2022

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Thursday 5 May 12:30–1:15

What needs to happen for BNG to be a success?

Since the Environment Act was passed in November 2021, the juggernaut that is biodiversity net gain (BNG) is very much picking up speed. However, while it is now very clear that BNG will happen, it is much less clear how it will be implemented, how the biodiversity offsetting market will operate and who will make sure that BNG achieves its goals (i.e., a clear reversal in biodiversity loss across England). In its recent consultation on BNG, which RSK Wilding has now formally responded to, Defra very helpfully set out some of the key issues involved with the process and its thinking on how these might be addressed in order to ensure success.

In this talk, Rich Prew and Mark Lang will summarise the key issues that arose from the consultation and what we in RSK Wilding think is required to resolve them. These will include

  • the resourcing shortfall in local planning authorities (which will be required to administer the process)
  • glitches and inconsistencies with the Defra Biodiversity Metric
  • the issue of ‘stacking’ of natural capital benefits
  • how species can be incorporated into what is currently a habitat-centric process
  • the clear need to ensure that the market in biodiversity credits is properly regulated and that only accredited practitioners can operate.

Rich and Mark will use examples from their own experience to illustrate where they currently have concerns and where lessons learned might help with the evolution of the BNG process. Finally, they will gaze into the crystal ball and set out how they see BNG evolving over the next two to five years. Will the process be working smoothly? Will there be enough habitat banks and offsetting sites to address the demand for biodiversity credits, both from developers and from corporations? Will rewilding have been so successful that the English will have regressed to become a nation of hunter-gatherers?

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First Thursday Club

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This webinar series is a monthly scientific, specialist-led webinar created and led by RSK Biocensus, which focuses on best practices relating to the natural environment and how these could affect RSK and external businesses.


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