Aylesbury Vale Area

Biodiversity Accounting Supplementary Planning Document

Ended on the 19 March 2021
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Appendix 1 – Adopted Policies related to this Supplementary Planning Document

Chiltern Core Strategy 2011 - POLICY CS24: BIODIVERSITY

The Council will aim to conserve and enhance biodiversity within the District. In particular

  • the Council will work with its partners to protect and enhance legally protected species and all sites and networks of habitats of international, national, regional or local importance for wildlife or geology. development proposals should protect biodiversity and
  • provide for the long-term management, enhancement, restoration and, if possible, expansion of biodiversity, by aiming to restore or create suitable semi-natural habitats and ecological networks to sustain wildlife. This will be in accordance with the Buckinghamshire Biodiversity Action Plan as well as the aims of the Biodiversity Opportunity Areas and the Chiltern AONB Management Plan. where
  • development proposals are permitted, provision will be made to safeguard and where possible enhance any ecological interest.
  • where, in exceptional circumstances, development outweighs any adverse effect upon the biodiversity of the site and there are no reasonable alternative sites available, replacement habitat of higher quality will be provided through mitigation and/or compensation to achieve a net gain in biodiversity.

South Bucks Core Strategy 2011 - Core Policy 9: Natural Environment

The highest priority will be given to the conservation and enhancement of the natural beauty of the Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and the integrity of Burnham Beeches Special Area of Conservation.

The conservation and enhancement of the Chilterns AONB and its setting will be achieved by ensuring that all development complies with the purposes of the AONB and its Management Plan. The conservation and enhancement of Burnham Beeches SAC, and its surrounding supporting biodiversity resources, will be achieved through restricting the amount of development in close proximity to the site, and ensuring that development causes no adverse effect on the integrity of the SAC. Further details on mechanisms for achieving this will be given in the Development Management DPD.

More generally, the landscape characteristics and biodiversity resources within South Bucks will be conserved and enhanced by:

  • Not permitting new development that would harm landscape character or nature conservation interests, unless the importance of the development outweighs the harm caused, the Council is satisfied that the development cannot reasonably be located on an alternative site that would result in less or no harm and appropriate mitigation or compensation is provided, resulting in a net gain in Biodiversity.
  • Seeking the conservation, enhancement and net gain in local biodiversity resources within the Biodiversity Opportunity Areas, on other non-designated land, on rivers and their associated habitats, and as part of development proposals.
  • Maintaining existing ecological corridors and avoiding habitat fragmentation.
  • Conserving and enhancing landscapes, informed by Green Infrastructure Plans and the District Council's Landscape Character Assessment.
  • Improving the rural/urban fringe by supporting and implementing initiatives in the Colne Valley Park Action Plan.
  • Seeking biodiversity, recreational, leisure and amenity improvements for the River Thames setting where opportunities arise, for example at Mill Lane (see Core Policy 15).

Wycombe Local Plan 2019

Policy CP7 – Delivering the infrastructure to support growth.

Provision will be made for new infrastructure to support growth, through planning obligations, the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) and other available funding streams as appropriate. Where justified, development will be required to provide or contribute towards delivering the key infrastructure requirements for the District including:

  1. Environment a) Green Infrastructure – including landscape, recreation, and biodiversity improvements;

Policy CP 10 – Green Infrastructure and the natural environment.

The Council will promote the conservation and enhancement of the natural environment and green infrastructure of the District through:

  1. Conserving, protecting and enhancing the Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and other natural environmental assets of local, national and international importance by:
    1. Protecting them from harmful development through development management policies in this Plan and the Delivery and Site Allocations Plan including the protection of biodiversity and landscape designations and landscape character based approach to considering proposals;
    2. Working with the Chilterns AONB Board and other agencies to improve the management of the AONB and other natural assets, and help people's enjoyment of them;
    3. Taking a landscape character based approach to considering proposals.
  2. Ensuring there is a net gain in biodiversity within individual development proposals and across the District as a whole over the plan period.
  3. Working with local natural environment partnerships to protect and enhance the green infrastructure network of the District by:
    1. Protecting designated sites and through management plans ensuring their biodiversity value will be enhanced;
    2. Proactive, early and strategic planning of green infrastructure to maximise its benefits, including a baseline assessment of what exists (function, location, size, connectivity);
    3. Keeping under review and updating the extent of the Green Infrastructure network in coordination with the Bucks and Milton Keynes Natural Environment Partnership and other agencies;
    4. Ensuring through development management policies that all development is required to maximise the opportunities to protect, enhance, expand, connect, improve and use the existing green infrastructure, including across the border of the development site.
  4. Working in partnership with the Environment Agency, Natural England and the water companies to protect, manage and improve water quality in the District, particularly the quality of water bodies which are currently failing to meet the Water Framework Directive (WFD) requirements as set out in the Thames River Basin Management Plan (RBMP).

Policy DM 34 – Delivering Green Infrastructure and Biodiversity in Development

  1. All development is required to protect and enhance both biodiversity and green infrastructure features and networks both on and off-site for the lifetime of the development.
  2. Developments proposals are required to evidence a thorough understanding of context through the preparation of a proportionate assessment of existing and planned green infrastructure, biodiversity and ecological features and networks both on the site and in the locality, and demonstrate how:
    1. Through physical alterations and a management plan for the lifetime of the development:
      1. Existing green infrastructure and biodiversity assets will be maximised;
      2. Opportunities to enhance existing and provide new green infrastructure and biodiversity assets will be maximised;
      3. Development will deliver long lasting measurable net gains in biodiversity;
      4. Where appropriate, a monitoring plan will be put in place to review delivery of i - iii.
    2. The mitigation hierarchy has been applied by following a sequential approach to avoid, minimise, mitigate, and finally compensate for (on then off-site) any harm to biodiversity. If significant harm cannot be avoided in this way, development will not be permitted. 3. Development (excluding householder applications) is required as a minimum to:
      1. Secure adequate buffers to valuable habitats;
      2. Achieve a future canopy cover of 25% of the site area on sites outside of the town centres and 0.5 ha or more. This will principally be achieved through retention and planting of trees, but where it can be demonstrated that this is impractical the use of other green infrastructure (e.g. green roofs and walls) can be used to deliver equivalent benefit;
      3. Within town centres and on sites below 0.5 ha development is required to maximise the opportunities available for canopy cover (including not only tree planting but also the use of green roofs and green walls);
      4. Make provision for the long term management and maintenance of green infrastructure and biodiversity assets;
      5. Protect trees to be retained through site layout and during construction.

Delivery and Site Allocations Plan 2013 – Policy DM14 Biodiversity in Development

  1. All development proposals should be designed to maximise biodiversity by conserving, enhancing or extending existing resources or creating new areas or features.
  2. Where potential biodiversity interest is identified on a site or the development creates an opportunity to increase biodiversity, the Council will require an ecological survey and report to be submitted which demonstrates how this will be addressed.

Vale of Aylesbury Local Plan Policy NE1

The relevant policy as of January 2021 is policy NE1. The Vale of Aylesbury Local Plan is at the latter stages of Examination in Public, and although the Inspector has no concern with the Main Modifications to this policy, NE1 may change because of a recommendation in the Inspectors final report so is not presented here. Once the Vale of Aylesbury Local Plan is adopted, this Supplementary Planning Document will be bought to Cabinet, to authorise its use in the northern and central planning areas of Buckinghamshire Council.

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