Harnessing biodiversity net gain without the risk
Biodiversity Net Gain (BNG) is a critical initiative that seeks to balance the needs of agriculture with the preservation of natural ecosystems. By implementing sustainable practices, farmers and landowners can take an active role in restoring biodiversity while also reaping the benefits of more resilient farming systems.
This approach aligns with the government's recent announcement of the mandatory Biodiversity Net Gain (BNG) policy schedule, which will take effect in January 2024. With the policy deadline now providing certainty across the industry, BNG presents a significant opportunity for landowners and farmers to diversify their businesses as January approaches.
But with a limited number of biodiversity units required to service initial demand, how do adopters of BNG ensure they don't end up with a costly stranded asset or fragmented income stream?
Using detailed demand analysis and a portfolio of clients across the development and infrastructure sector, Environment Bank is providing high-integrity Biodiversity Units specifically aligned with demand. With this valuable insight, alongside secured funding through sustainable investment, Environment Bank can remove risk from the farmer or landowner.
Environment Bank pays over £27,000 per hectare across a period of 30 years – with annual uplifts included – comprised of land rents and management payments. This ensures a secure, long-term income for landowners.
Environment Bank takes on the responsibility for all creation and infrastructure costs, including administrative costs and legal fees where applicable. Their trained ecologists handle all reporting and monitoring of the biodiversity uplift. This allows the landowner to focus on their land management activities while Environment Bank handles the intricacies of BNG implementation and unit delivery. This means that regardless of BNG demand, payments to the farmer or landowner are secure for the full 30 year term.
Environment Bank is committed to supporting landowners every step of the way. They have a dedicated team of legal, land, planning and ecology experts to provide specialist support throughout. This collaborative approach gives farmers and landowners long-term peace of mind alongside the opportunity to enhance their landscapes, maximising their environmental and ecosystem value, all while retaining ownership and their connection with the land.
In addition, Environment Bank tailors a management plan to suit landowners’ existing business objectives and funding sources. This flexibility ensures landowners retain any extra benefits they currently enjoy, such as cattle grazing and hay cuts.
Richard Pendlebury, a landowner from Greater Manchester who is creating a 49-hectare Habitat Bank on his land, shared his perspective: "The benefits of creating a Habitat Bank on our farmland are abundant. The Environment Bank model means we’ll receive a reliable income for at least 30 years, which is very reassuring, and quite rare in the farming sector. It is also a relief for us that we can concentrate on our role as land managers and let the team of ecologists at Environment Bank take care of all aspects of the Biodiversity Net Gain scheme. They know how to develop the land to benefit nature and how to work with local authorities for developers to purchase the Biodiversity Units the land will yield."
To find out more, call our team on 01904 202990 or register your land to get started with no obligation.