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Home / News and Insights / Press / Biodiversity net gain is real – what you need to know

Following multiple delays, the government has finally implemented legislation that makes biodiversity net gain (BNG) mandatory from 12 February 2024 for larger permissions and 2 April 2024 for smaller ones. Writing for New Civil Engineer, partner Angus Walker takes readers through what biodiversity net gain means, the differentiation between large and small scale developments, and his predictions on its success.

Angus Walker writes:

‘[Biodiversity Net Gain] means that every planning application made from that date will have to ensure that the environment will be improved by at least 10% more than the losses that the development will cause. This is calculated using a ‘biodiversity metric’ that gives a numerical score to the habitat that will be lost depending on its area, condition, distinctiveness (ie rarity) and strategic significance.

For example as grassland has a distinctiveness score of 2 in the metric, a hectare of grassland in medium condition (also scoring 2) that is not strategically significant and will be lost to a development would get a score of 4 biodiversity units, and some other habitat would have to be created or improved such that the score of the creation or improvement is at least 4.4, in other words, 10% more than 4.’

The full article is available to read on the New Civil Engineer website.

To keep up to date on the latest Biodiversity Net Gain news, subscribe to our bi-weekly BNG Bulletin newsletter.

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