Uttlesford District Council's Biodiversity Duty
Public authorities who operate in England must consider what they can do to conserve and enhance biodiversity in England.
In accordance with the duty imposed on councils by Section 40 of the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act 2006, updated by Section 102 of the Environment Act 2021, Uttlesford District Council will in exercising all its functions, have regard to the purpose of conserving biodiversity. This duty also means that district and parish councils can spend funds in conserving biodiversity.
According to Defra (Biodiversity 2020), biodiversity is the variety of all life on Earth. It includes all species of animals and plants; everything that is alive on our planet. Biodiversity is important for its own sake and has its own intrinsic value.
A number of studies have shown this value also goes further. It is the building block of our 'ecosystems'. These provide us with a wide range of goods and services that support our economic and social wellbeing. These include essentials such as food, fresh water and clean air, but also less obvious services such as protection from natural disasters, regulation of our climate, and purification of our water or pollination of our crops. Biodiversity also provides important cultural services, enriching our lives.
The object of this commitment is to work towards enhancing and protecting the biodiversity of Uttlesford.
All committees of the council will consider sustainability, environmental impact and biodiversity when making decisions and will develop and implement policies and strategies as required.
In particular, the council will aim to improve the biodiversity of the area in the following ways:
- consider the potential impact on biodiversity represented by planning applications.
- manage its land and property using environmentally friendly practices that will promote biodiversity.
- support local businesses & council operations in the adoption of low impact practices.
- support residents and local organisation activities to enhance and promote biodiversity