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New biodiversity rules to absorb 650,000 tonnes of carbon each year

by | 14 Mar 24 | Nature & Biodiversity, News

New natural habitats created through the new biodiversity net gain (BNG) rules could absorb over quarter of a million tonnes of carbon dioxide every year, according to new research from Joe’s Bloom.

The legislation, which was introduced last month, could see over 15,000ha of biodiversity established each year across England.

The tech start-up’s research analysed the carbon storage potential of the natural habitats that this increase could create, finding that the carbon storage potential of woodland, heath, grasslands and wetlands equate to emissions released from 4.6 billion kilometres of driving an average car.

As well as increasing the country’s carbon absorption potential, the new BNG policy has the potential to protect England’s native planting and animal species, which many could argue is needed after the Woodland Trust revealed that one-third of all woodland species are declining.

This analysis by Joe’s Bloom comes at a time when the European Earth Observation Agency showed global annual temperatures have for the first time breached the critical benchmark of 1.5C above pre-industrial levels set by the United Nations.

The Global Carbon Project science team has also revealed that global fossil CO2 emissions were at an all time high at the end of last year.

Robin McAruthur, chair of the Joe’s Blooms Advisory Board says: “This analysis adds to mounting evidence that nature recovery fuelled by BNG, whether it’s restoring wildlife-rich habitats or creating green corridors to bridge together fragmented habitats, will play a central role in boosting the UK’s resilience to climate change.”

He goes on to say developers and local authorities have “an opportunity to build the homes we so desperately need whilst also making a nature-positive contribution to the climate crisis.

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