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Flowers everywhere? England’s ambitious scheme to restore wildlife hangs in the balance

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By illuminem briefings

· 2 min read

illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on The Guardian or enjoy below:

🗞️ Driving the news: The UK government's Biodiversity Net Gain (BNG) pilot scheme, launching this month, aims to enhance biodiversity through habitat banking
The initiative requires new developments to achieve a 10% net increase in biodiversity, creating habitats like wildflower meadows and wetlands

🔭 The context: One of the five farms piloting this project is Iford Estate, where manager Ben Taylor plans to convert a significant portion of the land into wildlife habitats
This scheme is part of a broader effort to compensate for ecological damage caused by development projects

🌍 Why it matters for the planet: BNG could transform English farmland, addressing the loss of wildflower meadows and other natural habitats
However, its success depends on effective monitoring and delivery, with concerns raised about the potential for unfulfilled developer promises

⏭️ What's next: Despite delays and uncertainties, developers are acquiring BNG credits in anticipation
The scheme offers a chance to address the drastic reduction in the UK's wildflower meadows and to mitigate climate change impacts on agriculture

💬 One quote: "I've been here for 25 years and the change in weather has been phenomenal," (Ben Taylor)

📈 One stat: The UK has lost 97% of its wildflower meadows since the 1930s, highlighting the critical need for initiatives like BNG

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