Environment

  • Photo of How honeybees have changed the floral landscape

    How honeybees have changed the floral landscape

    These tiny pollinators have been essential in understanding how the UK’s fields, hedgerow, wild spaces, gardens have changed since the 1950’s. By using cutting-edge DNA barcoding techniques, scientists at the National Botanic Garden of Wales have identified the plants honeybees appear to favour by looking at the pollen grains trapped within honey. The differences were clear. White clover had been the most important plant for honeybees but, with fewer pastures today and increased use of herbicides and inorganic fertiliser in farming, this has dropped to second place. Now the insects are visiting much more of: bramble – their modern-day favourite…

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  • Photo of New guide for sustainable house building

    New guide for sustainable house building

    New guide highlights the need for biodiversity to be considered at the early stages of planning home developments in order to reduce carbon emissions, encourage wildlife, and help reverse habitat decline. The impact of COVID-19 has shown the need for more accessible green and nature rich space. Over the last 50 years 58% of UK species have declined, and urbanisation is considered to be a key cause of this decrease due to the challenge it poses to local wildlife. The continued expansion of urban area acts as a challenging place for wildlife as it tackles with air, noise and light…

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  • Photo of Wildlife charities raise £8m for nature recovery scheme

    Wildlife charities raise £8m for nature recovery scheme

    The Wildlife Trusts has raised almost £8m just six months after launching its 30 by 30 ambition to kickstart nature’s recovery across 30% of land by 2030. Funds will buy land to provide new homes for wildlife and allow nature to thrive in increasing abundance across wilder, joined-up places. The plan is to reverse decades of steep wildlife decline and threat to the natural world. The Wildlife Trusts coalition has over the past year unveiled 10 new projects, which also include restoring arable fields to heathland, improving wildflower meadows and quadrupling the size of a nature reserve to help a…

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  • Photo of National Trust tree planting scheme

    National Trust tree planting scheme

    Despite the coronavirus pandemic, the National Trust has planted 60,000 young sapling trees across the UK over the last few months in bid to protect landscapes, attract more wildlife, and create new homes for nature. Kickstarting the plans to plant 20 million trees across England, Wales and Northern Ireland by 2030, the idea is to plants trees in the right places – ensuring that any release of carbon through soil disturbance is minimal. The planting project with help with flood management. The trees should be able to slow the flow of water when there is flooding, benefiting the surrounding landscapes…

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  • Photo of Biodiversity Net Gain: the burden of proof

    Biodiversity Net Gain: the burden of proof

    Dr Abigail Barker, Chief Operating Officer at Natural Capital Research talks of the importance of benchmarking biodiversity. Biodiversity is now regarded as critical natural capital asset by government – enshrined in policy and a mandatory condition of planning permission in the 2019 Environment Bill. Government house building targets remain aggressive – still pegged at 300,000 per year by the mid-2020s – and this will mean that whether those targets are specifically reached, many  thousand hectares of land will be developed for housing, often impinging on formerly rural plots. Policymakers, mindful of the impact on biodiversity, have put rules in place…

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  • Photo of Sustainability key in future highway design

    Sustainability key in future highway design

    Key considerations of future road design will be sustainability and climate change, thanks to a panel of design experts who are working closely with Highways England. The Company’s Strategic Design Panel has published its fourth progress recommendations report. The report discusses the Panel’s progress over the past year and a half (June 2019 to end of 2020) and suggests key recommendations to take forward in the second period. The Panel recommendations include: accelerate communication and training to promote and embed its design vision and principles into its processes and culture act on the Panel’s recommendations for adapting to climate change,…

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  • Photo of UK sets new net zero targets

    UK sets new net zero targets

    To keep the government’s commitment of achieving net zero green-house gas emissions by 2050 on track, it is estimated that around 350,000 new construction jobs will need to be created by 2028. The Building Skills for Net Zero report by the Construction Industry Training Board explores and discusses the need for green building specialists to reduce carbon emissions. This produces huge opportunity for the construction industry to meet new demands through the adaptation and development of new skills and services, driving a green job bloom. In turn this adds value to communities, people, and clients. The UK Green Building Council…

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  • Photo of Green spaces key element in new housing in the North East

    Green spaces key element in new housing in the North East

    Greener building and conserving wildlife work in unison in the North East as a new path to sustainable development prompts action. Natural England’s district level licensing (DLL) scheme, which primarily prioritises protecting wildlife, also helps support the Government’s ambitions to build greener. The program has been launched in Northumberland, Durham, Tyne & Wear and Tees Valley. Great crested newts are protected under UK and EU law due to their dramatic decline in population over the last 60 years. It is an offence to harm or disturb them. Therefore, developers must apply for a licence prior to any construction on or…

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  • Photo of Liverpool City Council Protects all parks and green spaces, forever

    Liverpool City Council Protects all parks and green spaces, forever

    Liverpool residents will be guaranteed access to park and green spaces, forever. This removes the threat that any might be built on or sold off. It’s all part of a new strategic partnership between Fields in Trust and Liverpool City Council. Liverpool is the first local authority to ensure local access to green space for all residents by protecting each of their eligible parks and green spaces.   The city council’s Cabinet has committed to protect 100 parks and green spaces across the city. It totals over 1,000 hectares. It sets the ambition that everyone will live less than a…

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  • Photo of RHS to be peat free by 2025

    RHS to be peat free by 2025

    The RHS has committed to being 100% peat free by 2025 as it trials alternative responsibly sourced growing media. Peatlands, from which the end product is harvested, are the world’s largest carbon store and provide valuable ecosystems for wildlife. As such, the charity has long championed the use of peat-free growing media among its members and over the next few years will be trialling sphagnum moss from sphagnum farming, anaerobic digestate, forest co-products, and waste materials to achieve peat-free status. RHS gardens are currently 98% peat-free with the exception of some rare and exotic plants. The RHS also stopped selling…

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  • Photo of Broughton Sanctuary ‘biggest tree planting scheme in England this year’

    Broughton Sanctuary ‘biggest tree planting scheme in England this year’

    Broughton Sanctuary at Broughton Hall Estate has become home to the largest tree planting scheme in England this year. Working in partnership with the White Rose Forest, 160 hectares of trees will have gone in the ground between December and April 2021. That’s equal to 224 football pitches.   By slowing the flow of water runoff into local rivers, the trees planted at Broughton Sanctuary will help protect communities in the Aire river valley, from Skipton down to Leeds City Centre, from the risk of future damaging flooding events.   The project is important within the Leeds Flood Alleviation Scheme…

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  • Photo of Mobilane joins Green Roof Organisation

    Mobilane joins Green Roof Organisation

    Mobilane has joined the Green Roof Organisation (GRO) as supplier members. Mobilane is a pioneer in the development of green roof technology and products with their MobiRoof green roof systems.   The Company is pleased to be able to support the organisation as they look to encourage the retrofitting of green roofs to existing buildings. They also promote installations of high quality green roofing in every city and town. The GRO represents all elements of the UK green roof industry. This includes specialist contractors, suppliers, other trade bodies, NGOs, ecologists, architects and designers.   Aligned with Mobilane’s own aims, the…

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  • Photo of Ground Control carbon neutral four years ahead of schedule

    Ground Control carbon neutral four years ahead of schedule

    Ground Control has reached its goal of achieving carbon neutral certification. This has come four years ahead of schedule. Ground Control’s certification by the Carbon Trust followed a detailed analysis of its carbon emissions. It illustrates the company’s commitment to fight climate change.   Carbon neutrality has been achieved by reducing carbon emissions through a combination of in-house efficiency measures and the use of renewable energy. The business has also offset remaining emissions through external projects.   Ground Control CEO Simon Morrish said:   “We’re delighted to have beaten our initial target of becoming carbon neutral by 2025.   “With…

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  • Photo of Birmingham first UK city to develop an Urban Forest Master Plan

    Birmingham first UK city to develop an Urban Forest Master Plan

    Birmingham is taking a strategic approach to its urban forest. It is engaging experts and key stakeholders to help it prepare an Urban Forest Master Plan.  This project is the first of its kind in the UK and follows a model used in the US and Canada.   The Plan will help Birmingham work towards a vision for its trees that is sustainable into the future.   In the UK, the development of detailed Urban Forest Master Plans (UFMPs) has been slow. A significant reason is the absence of a case study and resultant model.   The Birmingham project will…

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  • Photo of HS2 project team to create 127 hectares of new habitat

    HS2 project team to create 127 hectares of new habitat

    The HS2 team will create 127 hectares of new habitats to lift the local natural environment. It’s called The Colne Valley Western Slopes project. It will be a major contributor in meeting the HS2 carbon reduction targets by delivering ecological gain.   This scheme will reduce the carbon footprint by reducing road haulage and waste treatment activities. It will allow habitats to sequester carbon by replacing arable land with natural habitats.   Plant species and habitats are being selected to be resilient to a changing climate.   65,000 trees and shrubs of 32 species will be planted together with 3.5km…

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  • Photo of Land Studio helping to transform pub in Green Belt project

    Land Studio helping to transform pub in Green Belt project

    Land Studio is part of a project team working to transform a derelict pub into a series of bespoke family homes.  The Stamford Arms pub near Altrincham, hasn’t opened for a decade. Cheshire East Council granted planning approval for the refurb..   Land Studio is working with Novo Property Group on the development.   18 months in the making, the proposals for this heritage site are within the Cheshire Green Belt. It will see the restoration and conversion of the former pub into nine apartments. The stable block and coach houses will become five mews cottages. There will also be…

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  • Photo of RBG Kew launches 10-year strategy to end extinction crisis

    RBG Kew launches 10-year strategy to end extinction crisis

    The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew today releases ‘Our Manifesto for Change 2021-2030’. It’s a new strategy mapping out its mission and areas of focus for the next decade. The world leading plant science institute pledges to double efforts to understand and protect plants and fungi. This is for the well-being of people and the future of all life on Earth.   The institution’s ultimate goal is step up to help to end the extinction crisis. It wants to contribute to creating a world where nature is protected, valued by all and managed sustainably.   In the wake of a global…

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  • Photo of Bringing nature to life at the home of Rolls-Royce

    Bringing nature to life at the home of Rolls-Royce

    Rolls Royce has announced a ‘rewilding’ project at the firm’s Goodwood manufacturing site. The company has asked young designers to get involved.   Designers are being invited to submit ideas for a feature in the Wildlife Garden. This garden will be at the Home of Rolls Royce, in a nationwide competition.   As well as ideas to nurture wildlife, such as pollinator-friendly plants, trees and flowers, bird feeders, bug hotels and nest-boxes, children can design seats, shelters, sculpture and other items that would make the Garden more appealing to Goodwood’s human population.   The winner will be chauffeur-driven to the…

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  • Photo of ArtificialGrass.com launches revolutionary eco-friendly AIR range

    ArtificialGrass.com launches revolutionary eco-friendly AIR range

    Over 90% of our children breathe in toxic air every day.  Emissions render our living, working and leisure spaces a major health risk.   Deaths attributed in some part to air pollution hit 7 million every year, according to the World Health Organisation. Mature trees are in the front ranks of this fight, their foliage absorbing and purifying. But now there is a new enlisting to the infantry: AIR™ from ArtificialGrass.com.   With every square metre of this product replicating the purifying skills of a mature tree. An average size AIR treated lawn can pack the same pollution-busting punches as…

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  • Photo of Natural flood management methods feature on BBC’s Countryfile

    Natural flood management methods feature on BBC’s Countryfile

    The series of methods including leaky dams, tree planting and Sphagnum moss were featured on Sunday’s Countryfile as part of a pilot project in Crompton Moor, Oldham aiming to show natural flood management options. The project is a partnership between City of Trees, the Environment Agency, EU LIFE IP Natural Course programme, Oldham Council, The Unity Partnership (Local Lead Flood Authority), Moors for the Future, the Friends of Crompton Moor and the Manchester Metropolitan University. Three natural flood management methods are being trialled on the moor to reduce the impact of flooding on the communities in the valley below. The…

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  • Photo of Mitie Landscapes launches UK’s first zero emission gritting service

    Mitie Landscapes launches UK’s first zero emission gritting service

    Mitie has launched the UK’s first zero emission gritting service for commercial use, using an electric gritter and sustainable white marine salt. The service uses the first zero emission gritter of its kind – a 100% electric vehicle (EV) with a battery-powered gritter attached. Both the EV itself and the vehicle-mounted gritter are charged each day at the Mitie Landscapes office in Nottingham, which is powered by REGO-backed renewable energy, meaning the service is truly zero emission. The new service is being trialled in Nottingham, with the gritter following a specially designed route in order to maximise the number of…

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  • Photo of Greener Recovery Festival hosted by Landscape Institute in March 2021

    Greener Recovery Festival hosted by Landscape Institute in March 2021

    The Landscape Institute is inviting built environment professionals to the Greener Recovery Festival. Registration is now open for the virtual event, which takes place on 22-26 March between 9am-1pm. The Greener Recovery festival will welcome a diverse and international audience on an accessible online platform. Exceptional thought leaders will gather to debate ‘greener recovery’ with topics ranging from climate to biodiversity action. Key discussions will be around net zero, environmental net gain, adaptation and natural capital accounting. Rebecca Pow, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Defra, will be giving a keynote speech on ‘Natural Capital approach to Green Recovery’. Doctor…

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  • Photo of Ground Control selected to join leading global environmental group

    Ground Control selected to join leading global environmental group

    Ground Control has won global recognition for accelerating the transition to electric vehicles (EVs) as part of the company’s commitment to lower its carbon footprint. In being granted membership to The EV100 Group, Ground Control has joined other companies such as Openreach, Centrica, Costain, EDF Energy, E.ON, GSK and DHL which are helping the UK to reach its net-zero goal by both transitioning to 100% electric vehicles and putting in place the infrastructure to achieve this change. The EV100 Group is working to make electric transport the new normal by 2030 and brings together forward-thinking companies dedicated to accelerating the transition…

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  • Photo of Green Achiever Gold Award for Rolawn for second time

    Green Achiever Gold Award for Rolawn for second time

    For the second consecutive year, Rolawn is celebrating the success of its environmental strategy, having retained the Green Achiever Gold Award with Diamond Banner accreditation. The award, which follows an annual independent audit by The Green Achiever Scheme, recognises Rolawn’s continuing improvement on the environmental front. Paul Dawson, Rolawn’s managing director, commented: “Green Achiever is a voluntary scheme in which Rolawn participates so that customers have evidence that the company’s environmental policy is actively practiced. Environmental responsibility is integral to Rolawn’s operations. The business works closely with experts in the field not just to ensure compliance with the latest regulations…

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  • Photo of Wyevale Nurseries receives ISO for peat reduction targets

    Wyevale Nurseries receives ISO for peat reduction targets

    Wyevale Nurseries has revealed it has passed its ISO 14001 Environmental Audit this year with its prime objective for 2021 being further peat reduction and taking it below 50%. The Hereford-based business has been awarded a certificate for its Environmental Management System, which meets requirements for the production and supply of container-grown stock to garden centres and amenity markets. Steve Reed, production director container division at Wyevale Nurseries, said: “We’re delighted to announce we’ve just passed our ISO 14001 Environmental Audit for the 10th year running with our prime objective being peat reduction, followed by a continued decrease in the…

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