The NEP Biodiversity Group aims to deliver biodiversity targets, as described in the NEP Biodiversity Group TOR Dec 2014. The Group will promote work at landscape-scale focusing on Biodiversity Opportunity Areas (BOAs) and key sites which support biodiversity such as Local Wildlife Sites (LWS). The Group will develop and promote partnership, including the establishment of active leads for BOAs, engagement with land managers and other sectors such as health and business.
A new task group which focuses on ensuring the value of the natural environment is embedded in all aspects of planning, including responding to Local Plans and landscape-scale infrastructure projects.
The NEP Green Infrastructure (GI) Group aims to promote coordinated thinking and action which focusses on the provision of a GI network which maximises multi functioning benefits for healthy people and environment. The group will look to review the Buckinghamshire Green Infrastructure Strategy and encourage the implementation of projects which are in line with the Delivery Plan. A key challenge is the incorporation of GI into new developments and the group will aim to share best practice. Projects related to other linked agendas will be supported for the common good, such as the Green Space Means Health project which has been running in urban areas across the county.
The NEP Energy and Resource Management (ERM) Task Group aims to promote the use of natural resources, including energy resources, in a way which protects the natural environment whilst using it to support growth. An important aspect of the group’s work has been the development of the Buckinghamshire Energy Strategy. Unlike many other energy strategies, this has the aim of promoting the benefits which developing energy resources can bring, rather than focusing on building a specified capacity. The Buckinghamshire Energy Strategy can be found here. The UK’s energy policies have been undergoing significant change in 2015 making this one of the most rapidly developing and challenging areas to address.