Active consideration for island biodiversity is encouraging

It is encouraging to read the Development & Planning Authority’s new requirements for biodiversity enhancement where agricultural land is allowed to become part of domestic gardens [DPA in move to stop more farming land becoming part of domestic gardens, Guernsey Press 21 August].

There is a wealth of knowledge within our island community on biodiversity, conservation and the environment. Our schools seem to have been way ahead in teaching children to grow fruit, flowers and vegetables and to value our natural environment, an example being the April 2021 Pollinator Project initiative.

It absolutely makes sense that our planning system is aligned 100% with our environmental aims set out so well in the Strategy for Nature document. However, it is a lot to ask of our planners and land developers that they become expert in this wide-ranging and ever-changing field of science. Far better if they seek advice (and act upon it) from the many local and experienced minds we have;

l our biodiversity education officer and manager of the 2018 Habitat survey,

l those running the Pollinator Project,

l the committees and members of La Societe, to name but a few.

Looking ahead, it feels like it is no longer sufficient to only protect and preserve what we have, in terms of biodiversity. Moreover, we now need to actively enhance and rebuild biodiversity across the whole of the island as we use (and reuse) the land. As well as having quotas for affordable housing on development sites, perhaps we should also think about quotas for biodiversity with newly-planted woodlands and nature improvement areas.

I hope we see more active consideration for biodiversity from the D&PA as decisions are made for the Pointues Rocques, Belgrave Vinery and Leale’s Yard housing sites.


With the support of the Delancey Conservation Committee


St Sampson

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