Delivering Biodiversity Net Gain in Greater Manchester
What is Biodiversity Net Gain?
Biodiversity Net Gain is an approach to development, such as a new building or construction, that leaves biodiversity in a better state than before. Where a development has an impact on biodiversity, developers will need to provide an increase in appropriate natural habitat and ecological features over and above that being affected. Through Biodiversity Net Gain, officials hope that the current loss of biodiversity through development will be halted and wildlife corridors can be restored.
Biodiversity Net Gain in Greater Manchester
The Greater Manchester Five-Year Environment Plan includes a high-level commitment to supporting the delivery of Biodiversity Net Gain across our city region. As part of proposals being brought forward by the Government’s 25-Year Environment Plan and the Environment Bill, all developments under the Town and Country Planning Act will need to achieve net gain for biodiversity of 10%. This is soon to become mandatory through the forthcoming Environment Act in 2023 – the National Planning Policy Framework also requires net gain to be achieved in a measurable way.
Why are we delivering guidance and support?
Delivery of Biodiversity Net Gain across the Greater Manchester city region is an ambitious aim. The Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) is at the forefront of progressing Biodiversity Net Gain, and central government is keen to work with the GMCA to understand how Biodiversity Net Gain can be implemented practically in accordance with national policy and professional guidance.
Biodiversity Net Gain guidance
Off-Site Biodiversity Net Gain scoping study
The Environment Partnership (TEP) was commissioned by Greater Manchester Combined Authority to undertake a scoping study for the delivery of off-site Biodiversity Net Gain (BNG) in Greater Manchester. The key outputs from the scoping study are set out in the report below, and include:
- Scoping study and gap analysis
- Process map identifying key stages involved in delivering/supporting the delivery of sites
- Timelines including key milestones
- Co-ordinated programme of activities to include a range of technical and capacity support
- Options to support delivery and key leads identified
Biodiversity Net Gain case studies
In 2018/19, the Greater Manchester Natural Capital Group worked with developers to retrospectively test Defra’s biodiversity metric on a number of development schemes, in order to begin to understand its implications for development and the natural environment in the city-region. Whilst the metric has subsequently been updated, the following case-studies provide useful summaries of our findings and lesson learned. The pilots were submitted by developers, and the Local Planning Authorities do not necessarily endorse the findings but are happy for this work to be shared.
Biodiversity New Gain webinar
On Wednesday 10 February 2021, GMCA and CIEEM hosted a Biodiversity New Gain webinar to discuss how Greater Manchester could implement Biodiversity Net Gain across the city region:
The slides from the webinar can be found below.
An FAQ document has been produced which includes questions and answers from the webinar
If you have any follow-up queries or require additional information about delivery of Biodiversity Net Gain in Greater Manchester, please get in touch with the following:
BNG implementation in your area – please contact your Local Planning Authority
BNG as part of Habitat Banking - contact the Greater Manchester Environment Team (email)
Planning Applications – please contact your Local Planning Authority