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Planning Advice

Ecology Planning Advice

Planning Advice

Planning Policy Statement 9 (PPS9): Biodiversity and Geological Conservation sets out national planning policies on the protection of biodiversity and geological conservation. Circular 06/05: Biodiversity and Geographical Conservation - Statutory Obligations and Their Impact Within the Planning System provides administrative guidance on application of the law in England relating to planning and nature conservation. The aspiration of PPS9 is to achieve no net loss of biodiversity through the planning system.

The Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010 (the “Habitats Regulations”) also require Local Planning Authorities to have regard to the regulations including the protection of certain species when determining planning applications.

The Ecology Service plays an essential role in providing advice and consultation on Worcestershire County Council planning applications (avoiding delays, additional costs and legal challenges), in informing planning decisions (determining the validity and adequacy of supporting ecological information) and in defending the ecological rationale behind planning decisions post-application (e.g. at appeal).

Case law examples below highlight breaches in planning policy and wildlife legislation, the photograph below is an example of a bat roost that could easily be missed if ecology is not appropriately taken into consideration. 

Case Lawlesser horseshoe bat roost in cellar

Regina v Cornwall County Council ex parte Jill Hardy, 2000.

A Judicial Review found in favour of Jill Hardy on the basis that the applicants Environmental Statement provided insufficient information upon which to grant planning permission. Costs to the Local Authority are thought to be in the range of hundreds of thousands of pounds.

Regina (on the application of Simon Woolley) v Cheshire East Borough Council, 2009.

A Judicial Review found in favour of Simon Woolley: it was determined that insufficient regard had been paid to European Protected Species issues by the LPA for the development. Costs to the Local Authority have been estimated to run to in excess of two hundred thousand pounds.

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This page was last reviewed 29 July 2013 at 13:45.
The page is next due for review 25 January 2015.