BSG Ecology’s staff include Suitably Qualified Ecologists (SQEs) for BREEAM and CfSH assessments who can advise clients on the Land use and Ecology criteria schemes. Our services include site survey and reporting, and we can provide advice on opportunities to obtain credits and the implementation of ecology recommendations.
Assessment under BREEAM and Code for Sustainable Homes (CfSH) is a requirement of many developments and we have worked throughout the UK (including the Channel Islands) on many BREEAM and CfSH schemes for the public and private sectors.
Ecology Consultancy Services
A key element of BREEAM and Code for Sustainable Homes (CfSH) is the calculation of the change in ecological value of a site and measures to enhance its ecology value. BSG Ecology is able to advise on native planting, species mixes and management regimes that can be employed to maximise the number of credits achievable under the ecology criteria of each scheme.
Many schemes for which BREEAM and/or CfSH is a requirement are very spatially constrained. Where space is at a premium, the fabric of the built environment itself can be used to deliver cost-effective gains for biodiversity. BSG Ecology are able to provide advice on maximising the ecological value of living roofs (including brown roofs and green roofs) and living walls (also known as green walls) which can both be used to contribute towards the award of ecology credits.
Frequently, consideration of BREEAM / CfSH is required at planning stage. Where both BREEAM / CfSH and planning are required, BSG Ecology ensures that the surveys undertaken in support of the planning application also provides the necessary baseline information to support the ecology elements of a sustainability assessment.
Following the Housing Standards Review, the Government withdrew the CfSH on 27 March 2015. CfSH assessments are still required for legacy cases (for further information and definition of legacy cases see the 2010 to 2015 government policy: energy efficiency in buildings paper. This does not affect BREEAM assessments.
BSG Ecology provides BREEAM and CfSH support to public and private sector clients. Our ecology consultancy services include:
- Design and completion of Phase 1 Habitat Surveys to identify the existing interest of the site;
- Completion of desk-based studies and consultation;
- Advice on the number of credits available under the relevant ecology criteria;
- Advice on how to maximise the number of attainable credits; typical measures include:
- Protection of ecological features;
- Advice on legal protection afforded to protected species;
- Advice on protection afforded to Species and Habitats of Principal Importance;
- Stakeholder liaison;
- Recommendations to enhance the biodiversity value of the site, using measures appropriate to the scheme including incorporation of features to benefit specific species; and,
- Advice on native planting, species mixes and management regimes that can be employed to maximise the number of credits achievable under the ecology criteria of each scheme.
Related Ecological Services
We also provide the following related services:
- Phase 1 habitat surveys and appraisals of habitats, communities and plant species located within proposed development sites;
- Preparation of method statements to ensure legal compliance, avoidance and mitigation of impacts as part of good design and at the implementation stage;
- Provision of tool box talks to communicate biodiversity requirements clearly to site personnel in advance of construction commencing at a scheme; and
- Ecological supervision.
BSG Ecology was commissioned to undertake an Extended Phase 1 survey of an existing College campus site in Merthyr Tydfil. The survey was required to provide supporting information for a planning application for the re-development of the site as part of the Merthyr Learning Quarter project (MLQ). A BREEAM Education Report was also provided for the scheme. BSG’s advice focussed upon actions that could be taken to maximise the credits received from the ecology section of the assessment.