Biodiversity Net Gain Offsite
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Biodiversity Net Gain Offsite

From January 2024, most developments in England will have to deliver 10% Biodiversity Net Gain Landowners as a condition of receiving planning permission. Where BNG cannot be delivered onsite, it can be secured offsite using the national biodiversity gain sites register. A developer can also purchase statutory biodiversity credits to meet the requirement.

This new offsite market is where you as a landowner or farmer come in, by creating or enhancing habitats to generate Biodiversity Gain Units (BNU) that can be sold to developers. With the potential to be worth PS135m – PS274m annually, this is a great opportunity for you to diversify your income.

Securing Our Future: The Imperative of Biodiversity Net Gain Strategies

However, you will need to be aware that the process is complex and may require the assistance of an ecologists. You will also need to comply with the new rules for selling BNUs, which will be subject to further consultation and implementation. NFU will support members as this evolves.

Defra’s How to sell offsite biodiversity gains as a land manager guide covers the process in detail and you should always seek the advice of an ecologists before proceeding. In addition to the statutory rules, you will need to consider your own financial position and whether this is a viable option for your business. You will also need to agree a legal agreement (section 106) or conservation covenant with the developer and make sure that your offsite habitat is legally secured for at least 30 years.

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