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Drastic planning reforms could destroy nature’s future - RSPB

view across winterbourne Downs, grassland with orchid with in foreground RSPB Winterbourne Downs (photo credit: Patrick Cashman)
RSPB Winterbourne Downs (photo credit: Patrick Cashman)

The government is approaching a “fork in the road” that could “change the course of the future for nature” as it plans to shake up the country’s planning system, wildlife conservation charity the RSPB has warned.

Today the UK’s largest conservation organisation the RSPB is asking people to speak up for nature and ensure wildlife in their local area is protected and make sure the wildlife that brought us so much solace during lockdown is not endangered by proposals for a radically different planning system.

Alice Hardiman, Head of Policy & Advocacy, RSPB England said: “During the most restrictive parts of lockdown we heard how people across the country connected with the nature in their local area like never before and how those who lived in urban areas longed for better access to green and beautiful wildlife havens. But the wildlife that brought us so much solace is just a fraction of what should be there.”

Last month the government published dramatic proposals to transform England’s planning system which could see vital wildlife havens covered with concrete before we even know they are there, make it faster and easier to develop on local wildlife habitats and fail to deliver the greenspaces communities desperately need.

The government has the chance to step up as a guardian for nature and ensure every community has access to green spaces riches in nature or sacrifice vital legal protections and watch as the nature’s future is destroyed.

Alice added: “Some of the most important protections for the incredible nature on our doorstep come from planning laws and regulations. With one in ten UK species at risk of extinction and more than 50% in decline, the planning proposals put the country at a fork in the road."

Posted on: 03 September 2020

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