The Environment Bill the Prime Minister regards as the “huge star of our legislative programme’’ returned to the new parliament but there are issues that urgently need addressing.
For one thing, there is much less focus on soil health compared to the partnering agriculture bill, which is a confusing oversight. Another large concern is that the new positive environmental targets won't have enough power to influence change locally.
Debbie Tann – Chief Executive of the Hampshire & Isle Of Wight Wildlife Trust said:
‘The Environment Bill is an absolutely crucial piece of legislation that could have the potential to put our local natural environment into recovery after decades of decline. It is fantastic to hear the government committing to linking up our fragmented and isolated landscapes into a ‘Nature recovery Network’, but the current proposals aren’t strong enough to guarantee real change. We need to see more ambitious and clear targets for nature combined with local nature recovery strategies with real power to influence local decision making over planning and council spending. We need the Bill to have more teeth to help restore our local natural heritage.’
Further information about the Environmental Bill and the important improvements it needs can be found here