Since the Government announced plans for new developments to deliver Biodiversity Net Gain on a mandatory basis in England, many local planning authorities have begun the process of incorporating net gain policies into their Local Plans. It is crucial that developers, planning consultants and ecological consultants understand these policies if successful projects are to be delivered. BSG Ecology has therefore developed a policy tracker for England to identify where Local Plan biodiversity net gain policies exist, where they are in preparation, and the Local Plan review stage authorities have reached.
Steart Marshes in Somerset is one of the largest examples of managed retreat (coastal realignment) in England. As a result of its design, it has rapidly become of great importance for biodiversity, and is also delivering wider ecosystem services benefits.
In this article, BSG Ecology Partner Peter Shepherd reflects on the lessons that can be learned from projects such as Steart if we are to deliver the bigger, better and better connected network of habitats envisioned for Britain by Sir John Lawton in his 2010 review
BSG Ecology now has five consultants who have been awarded Chartership by the Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management (CIEEM).
Chartership represents a considerable personal achievement, as it both recognises technical expertise and is the culmination of a lot of hard work. It should also provide our clients with the confidence that the advice they receive from BSG will help ensure positive outcomes for their projects.
We are delighted to announce that BSG Ecology has won the best Small-scale Mitigation Award and Tony Bradshaw Award (for outstanding best practice) from CIEEM, the leading professional membership body representing and supporting professional ecologists and environmental managers. We were also short-listed for the Best Medium Consultancy of the Year award (which we had previously won in 2018).
This short article summarises forthcoming licence charging changes detailed in Natural England’s Wildlife Licensing Newsletter of May 2019. It concentrates on those changes that are most relevant in terms of development projects.
We are delighted to have had a successful evening last week in Manchester at the annual awards ceremony of the Association of Noise Consultants (ANC) winning the Innovation Award and being joint winner of the Environmental Acoustics in Infrastructure Award.
‘Consultancy skills’ is a core element of the training we offer to new recruits, and is essential in helping new staff understand the culture of the organisation. It is also key to their professional development as ecological consultants, as it is aimed at equipping them to do their job as effectively as possible
Reptile survey work needs to be designed in a project-specific manner to allow impacts on populations to be accurately assessed and appropriate mitigation designed.
Our latest graduate training workshop, held in May 2019, provided attendees with an overview of British reptile ecology, and an opportunity to discuss the scope and specification of reptile survey and mitigation when faced with different development scenarios.
In May 2019 BSG Ecology’s Emily Moore and Sophie Olejnik spent an afternoon teaching primary school children in Barnsley about the ecology of amphibians and other freshwater creatures. The event allowed the children the opportunity to see and learn about a range of species, including great crested newt, smooth newt and common toad. It was facilitated by Barratt Homes, being close to one of the development sites we are supporting them on.
As BSG Ecology has grown as a business there has been a requirement for more staff to take on leadership and non-project related management activities. To ensure people feel equipped to take on these tasks, training has been developed to meet our specific needs through discussion with our staff and an external training provider. Our first Leadership and Management training day took place in Birmingham on 16 May 2019, and was attended by the BSG Senior Management Team.
In late 2017 BSG Ecology moved to a new cloud-based information management system, Deltek PIM. This new system allows us to manage our resources more effectively, providing a better service for our clients and more effective systems for our employees.