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Planning for Biodiversity

Nick Woolley congratulates the TCPA on its new Paper on planning for biodiversity and implores the Minister to hold firm to sustainable development.

At the Town & Country Planning Association (TCPA) Conference yesterday in London, Nick Woolley welcomed the launch of the TCPA’s new paper on the importance of conserving biodiversity and creating new wildlife habitats in new development projects.  From his nine years on the Council of English Nature (the predecessor of Natural England), he was well experienced in the need to plan in this way.  He went on to emphasise the financial benefits of so doing and that developers needed to get real to the fact that higher quality developments, with more well planned green space, rapidly became more desirable and so more valuable sites than others.  From his involvement and work with the Prince’s Foundation, it was clear that joint research had proved this point!

Later, in a discussion with the Minister for Housing, The Rt Hon, John Healey, Nick welcomed his determination to take forward far more sustainable house construction, but begged him not to be persuaded by the big volume housebuilders that in order to deliver the housing numbers required, the government had to water down it’s sustainable construction targets.  He stressed that it was perfectly possible to construct new homes to high environmental standards at little if any additional cost, with changes to design and materials used, but sadly the big developers would not accept this as it meant change to their factory-like, house production lines; they just wanted to maximise their profits by continuing to build the unsustainable house types they had been building for so long.

The Minister agreed the essential need to maintain the planned move to sustainable construction.

News Release | 2 December 2009

December 2nd, 2009
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