What information should an ecological assessment contain?
They must include an assessment of impact upon the habitat, species or feature, any mitigation measures considered appropriate or effective, and a programme for long term maintenance and management of the site. Ecological assessments may be incorporated into an environmental statement, if one is required.
When is an ecological assessment required?
An ecological assessment must accompany applications that will have an effect upon any wildlife features or habitats protected by the wildlife and countryside act 1981, the conservation (natural habitats etc) regulations 1994 and the protection of badgers act 1992. Assessments must be submitted if the development would occur within or immediately adjacent to the following designated sites:
- sites of special scientific interest
- special protection areas
- special areas of conservation
- ramsar sites
- sites of biological or geological importance
- sites involving ancient woodland
The South Lakeland Local Plan provides details of designated sites. Circular 01/2005 and Planning for Biodiversity and Geological Conservation: A Guide to Good Practice.