BSG Ecology provides services in support of development management and strategic planning to the public sector. These include a tailored ecological survey and advisory service for Local Authorities and other public bodies with regard to their land / property, and support in relation to other biodiversity duties such as Habitats Regulations Assessment (HRA), wildlife site selection and site management.

Overview

BSG Ecology provides a flexible and tailored ecological survey and advisory service for Local Authorities and other public bodies with regard to their land / property, and support in relation to other biodiversity duties such as Habitats Regulations Assessment (HRA), wildlife site selection and site management.

We have established long term relationships and are on the approved supplier lists for numerous public bodies, and also regularly provide ecological support services to contractors working under public sector frameworks (such as for the provision of new and refurbished schools and associated facilities in Wales and parts of England).

Ecology Services to Support Policy and Planning

We provide development management advice (including minerals and waste), ecological appraisal of planning applications, independent technical review of ecology chapters in Environmental Statements, interpretation of the relevant country national planning policy (including the NPPF, Planning Policy Wales and Scottish Planning Policy), and accompanying guidance.

We regularly provide and interpret information to assist public bodies in carrying out Habitats Regulations Assessments for plans and projects, in their role as competent authorities, as required under The Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2017 (as amended).

We provide ecological input to emerging local plan policy and plans, including site survey allocation recommendations, identification of site restoration and management requirements and representation at Examinations in Public (EIP) for plans.

We also have significant experience in providing the role of Ecology Expert Witness representation at public inquiries, planning hearings and EIP for development projects.

Scope of Public Sector Ecology Support

Our team works with our public sector clients across a range of technical disciplines. We tailor our service to meet specific needs and budgets, which may range from the provision of one-off assistance to more regular inputs. Examples of services we provide include:

  • Provision of expert ecological support and independent technical review;
  • Provision of regular suitably experienced staff support to support local authority staff resource, including temporary absences, so that continuity in their ecology service is maintained;
  • Provision of ecological survey, reporting, method statements and protected species licences associated with the renovation or development of local authority land, built assets and infrastructure projects;
  • Provision of Ecological Clerk of Works and ecologists for site attendance as part of protected species licence implementation and monitoring;
  • Preparation of screening templates for protected species to assist non-ecologist staff to carry out basic ecological site appraisals;
  • Preparation of biodiversity checklists tailored to local authority areas and local¬†Biodiversity Action Plans;
  • Preparation and delivery of bespoke training on relevant issues for clients;
  • Guidance on the on the consideration of impacts on protected areas and sites;
  • Development and application of non-statutory wildlife site selection criteria and policies;
  • Provision of a comprehensive suite of ecological surveys for habitats and species including support to the local development planning process;
  • Biodiversity research for government, SNCOs and local authorities;
  • Preparation of Biodiversity Action Plans, Biodiversity Implementation and Monitoring Plans for Local Authorities and Biodiversity Forums; and
  • Conservation management plans for nature reserves.