Wicken Fen

wicken-fen-squareFen are a unique and once typical habitat of Cambridgeshire. Wicken Fen is one of Britain’s oldest nature reserve the first areas being acquired by the National Trust in May 1899. The nature of the Fen has been shaped by topography, hydrology, and in particular, by centuries of use by man. The wetland has played an important role in the social and economic life of the area. As a result 29 species of mammal, over 200 species of birds, 1000 species of moth and butterfly, 1000 species of beetle, approaching 2000 species of fly and 25 species of dragonfly have been recorded from the Fen. The Fen therefore is a refuge for a very large number of UK Biodiversity Action Plan priority species. As a consequence the Fen is a National Nature Reserve, a Site of Special Scientific Interest, a Special Area of Conservation and a Ramsar site.

Cambridge Ecology Limited Wins at The Green Apple Environment Awards 2013

Cambridge Ecology Limited Wins at The Green Apple Environment Awards 2013

Cambridge Ecology Limited has received a Green Apple Award for making a significant contribution to the Abberton Scheme’s International Green Apple Award.

“Cambridge Ecology is proud and privileged to have worked with a Green Apple award photo CAMBRIDGE ECOLOGYforward-thinking and successful project such as the Abberton Scheme”, said Darren Frost, Company Director at Cambridge Ecology Limited, based at Over in Cambridgeshire. “New utilities were necessary to address the need for water security and supplies, and have also benefited the environment and biodiversity. It’s inspiring to be part of this implementation, particularly on such a large-scale construction project.”

“It is rewarding to see the Abberton Scheme recognised by a wider public for receiving the International Green Apple Award.”

The Abberton Scheme won in the national campaign to find Britain’s greenest companies, councils and communities. It competed against more than 500 other nominations and was presented with their Green Apple Award at a glittering presentation ceremony in the House of Commons on 11 November 2013.

Cambridge Ecology Limited provided high quality and professional ecological support to Carillion Civil Engineering and Essex and Suffolk Water at Abberton Reservoir. The ecological support included practical guidance and advice ensuring important ecological features – such as making sure nesting birds that are fully protected by national and international legislation – are not affected by construction works, and do not delay the construction programme. The success has come in the shape of Avocet and Great Crested Grebe nesting at the site for the first time, and after a seven-year absence Lapwing have now returned to breed successfully.

greenappleawardsThe International Green Apple Awards began in 1994 and have become established as the country’s major recognition for environmental endeavour among companies, councils, communities and countries. The awards are organised by The Green Organisation, an independent, non-political, non-activist, non-profit environment group dedicated to recognising and promoting environmental best practice.

Legislative changes

Legislative changes

On the 1 April 2010, the new Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010 (SI 2010/490) came into force (the “2010 Regulations”).

Essentially the 2010 Regulations are consolidating regulations, so they put in one place all the many changes that have been made to the domestic law implementing the Habitats Directive over the years since the first set of Regulations in 1994.

The key points are as follows:

  • For England and Wales and territorial seas the 2010 Regulations replace the Conservation (Natural Habitats Etc) Regulations 1994 (the “1994 Regulations”)
  • In England and Wales you should no longer refer to the old 1994 Regulations in your reports and correspondence. You therefore need to change the wording you use in your template reports etc.
  • All the regulations from the 1994 Regulations which you are used to quoting e.g. Regulation 48, 49 and 53 (appropriate assessment/IROPI/compensation); Regulation 39, 44 (European Protected Species (EPS) offences and EPS licensing); Regulation 3(4) (general duty on competent authorities to have regard to the Habitats Directive) etc are found in the new Regulations in a similar form. But (i) the numbering of the 2010 Regulations has all now changed; and (ii) the specific wording of the 2010 Regulations has in a number of cases changed, so you should now cite the new wording.
  • Regarding Scotland and its territorial sea, the new 2010 Regulations apply to reserved matters but the 1994 Regulations continue to apply for non-reserved matters. Therefore you need to be especially careful when advising in Scotland so you know which Regulations are the relevant ones.
  • Regarding Northern Ireland, nothing has changed and the Conservation (Natural Habitats etc) Regulations 1995 continue to apply.
  • Substantive changes have been made by the 2010 Regulations to the EPS licensing regime in England and Wales in relation to territorial sea areas.
  • A substantive change has been made to the EPS offence of “breach of EPS licence condition” to put the risk of prosecution squarely on the licence holder and reducing the risk to consultants.
  • Other changes have been made to update certain provisions (e.g. the provision implementing Art 10 Habitats Directive).
  • If you are dealing with projects in the “offshore” marine area i.e. beyond the territorial seas, then the Offshore Marine Conservation (Natural Habitats Etc) Regulations 2007 continue to apply but you need to be aware that they were also amended as of 1 April 2010 by the Offshore Marine Conservation (Natural Habitats Etc) (Amendment) Regulations 2010. The amendments however principally (though not exclusively) concern Scotland.