THE WILDLAND NETWORK - CONSULTATIONS and RESPONSES

Consultation on proposals to improve access to the English coast

Consultation on a Marine Bill White Paper, A Sea of Change

UK Climate Change Bill and Consultation

Public consultation on The Invasive Non-Native Species Framework Strategy for Great Britain

Fisheries 2027: towards a contract for the future of marine fisheries

Consultation on a review of the England Forestry Strategy

Public Consultation on the Draft Cairngorms National Park Plan

Consultation on controlling the spread of bovine tuberculosis in cattle in high incidence areas in England: badger culling

Brecon Beacons National Park Management Plan

Inquiry into energy in Wales

Wild Boar in England - consultation responses now posted

Environment Strategy Wales

Renewable energy in Wales (TAN 8)

The WN will be responding to public consultations related to wildland issues as and when they come out from Government. This page will list current consultations with their closing date. A copy of each consultation response will be posted. The WN welcomes contributions to these consultations and information on consultations in which you think the WN should have a voice.

Consultation on proposals to improve access to the English coast

When the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 was passed it was acknowledged that coastal land was different and needed to be looked at separately and in detail. Natural England has now concluded its study looking at a range of options for improving access to the coast and has published its report. It includes details of Natural England’s fact finding and research work along with its assessment of each of the three existing delivery options that could be used to improve coastal access, including the use of the Highways Act 1980 (using rights of way), section 3 of the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 and voluntary measures to create permissive access.

In its report Natural England has concluded that no existing mechanisms would provide a solution to meet the vision set out by Government of “a coastal environment where rights to walk along the length of the English coast lie within a wildlife and landscape corridor that offers enjoyment, understanding of the natural environment and a high quality experience; and which is managed sustainably in the context of a changing coastline”. Natural England has therefore recommended that the answer lies in providing a coastal access corridor implemented through new legislation.

Following consideration of Natural England’s report, Defra has issued a consultation paper Consultation on Proposals to improve access to the English coast on 19 June 2007. The consultation paper seeks views on a number of questions on each of the possible options for improving coastal access.

To accompany the consultation paper, Defra have published a copy of a research report undertaken by Asken Ltd into the benefits and costs of options to improve access to the coast - see www.defra.gov.uk/wildlife-countryside/issues/accesscoast.htm

The closing date for responses is by the end of 11 September 2007. The consultation document and a template for responding to the consultation paper is available in electronic format from here www.defra.gov.uk/corporate/consult/coast-access/index.htm

Consultation on a Marine Bill White Paper, A Sea of Change 

In March 2006 Defra undertook a consultation on proposals for a Marine Bill. The White Paper published 15 March 2007 sets out proposals that build upon those in the 2006 consultation and the extensive comments received both in response to that consultation and in meetings and discussions with a wide range of stakeholders.

The UK Government is proposing to introduce:

  • new UK-wide system of marine planning

  • streamlined, transparent and consistent system for licensing marine developments

  • flexible mechanism to protect natural resources, including marine protected zones with clear objectives

  • improvements to the management of marine fisheries in relation to England, Wales and Northern Ireland and the ability to share the costs of management with commercial and recreational sectors

  • new Marine Management Organisation delivering UK, England and Northern Ireland functions;

Views are sought on these proposals and input to the supporting regulatory impact assessment.

Responses can be sent by email: marinebillconsultation@defra.gsi.gov.uk

Alternatively, by post to the following address:

Marine Legislation Division
Defra
Area 2E
3-8 Whitehall Place
London
SW1A 2HH

The deadline for responses is 8 June 2007.

The consultation letter, White Paper and Regulatory impact Assessment can be downloaded from:
www.defra.gov.uk/corporate/consult/marinebill-whitepaper07/index.htm

A response has been submitted: WN member Mark Fisher here (PDF 22kb)

UK Climate Change Bill and Consultation

The UK Government is committed to addressing both the causes and consequences of climate change and to that end is bringing forward proposals for a Climate Change Bill.

The Bill will introduce a clear, credible, long-term framework for the UK to achieve its goals of reducing carbon dioxide emissions and ensure steps are taken towards adapting to the impacts of climate change.

The objective for this consultation is to ensure that all interested parties have the opportunity to contribute their opinions at an early stage of policy development. Important questions are being asked about the shape of the policy proposals and what issues should be taken into account, when developing the Climate Change Bill.

Views are sought on all parts of the consultation document, and in particular responses to the specific questions posed throughout Section 5 and also in the partial Regulatory Impact Assessment.

Responses to the consultation on the draft bill should be sent to: climatechangeconsultation@defra.gsi.gov.uk or to:

Patrick Erwin / James Hardy
Climate Change Legislation Team
Area 4/F5
Ashdown House
123 Victoria Street
London SW1E 6DE

The closing date for comments is 12 June 2007

The full package of consultation documents and response forms can be accessed at: www.defra.gov.uk/corporate/consult/climatechange-bill/index.htm

Public consultation on the Invasive Non-Native Species Framework Strategy for Great Britain

Defra, along with the devolved administrations of Great Britain (the Welsh Assembly and Scottish Executive) has launched a consultation to help tackle invasive non-native species.

The GB Invasive Non-native Species Framework Strategy is intended to provide a strategic framework within which the actions of government departments, their related bodies and key stakeholders can be better co-ordinated.  Its overall aim is to minimise the risks posed, and reduce the negative impacts caused, by invasive non-native species in Great Britain.

The Framework Strategy proposes a way in which stakeholders can work together to guard against invasive non-native species through:

  • Prevention: to reduce the risk of invasive non-native species being introduced;

  • Early detection, surveillance and monitoring: ensuring effective mechanisms are developed so that invasive threats can be responded to quickly;

  • Control and eradication: finding the best solution and identifying the right approach in the case of each species;

  • Raising awareness: ensuring that the public is aware of invasive non-native issues;

  • Legislative framework: ensuring that current and any future legislation can adequately guard against the negative impacts;

  • Research: ensuring that there is up to date information on the threats posed by these species, and the best methods to tackle them.

The draft strategy was produced by a working group consisting of key stakeholders from industry, Non Governmental Organisations and government.  The public consultation is intended to canvass a broad spectrum of views on this large and complex subject.

Views and comments are therefore welcomed on the:
Draft Strategy Document  www.nonnativespecies.org/documents/Draft_StrategyV6.4.pdf
Regulatory Impact Assessment. www.nonnativespecies.org/documents/Strategy_RIAv2.3.pdf

Responses to this consultation can be sent by post, fax or e-mail to Diane Owen as detailed below:

  • PDF form – you can print this form off, complete it by hand and return by post or fax; or,

  • Microsoft Word document – you can save this form to your computer, complete it electronically and then return it by e-mail as an attachment.

If  replying by letter, please clearly indicate in your response which questions or parts of the consultation paper you are responding to as this will aid analysis of the responses received.  Also complete and enclose page 1 of the response document which includes your details as well as sections on confidentiality and information sharing. 

Responses should be received by 23 May 2007

Diane Owen, Non-native Species Secretariat, CSL, Sand Hutton, York, YO41 1LZ.  Phone: 01904 462680. Fax 01904 462111. Email: nnss@csl.gov.uk

www.nonnativespecies.org/07_Latest_Developments_(Public_Consultations).cfm

Fisheries 2027: towards a contract for the future of marine fisheries

Defra has launched a consultation on its long-term vision for marine fisheries.

A sustainable fisheries sector is essential for delivering the Government’s vision of “clean, healthy, safe, productive and biologically diverse oceans and seas”. Fish and shellfish are a valuable resource shared between communities, regions and nations: we all have a role in making sure that they are used sustainably. This means getting the best possible economic and social benefits from fishing for the least environmental cost – including safeguarding stocks for the future.

The consultation document sets out Defra’s vision of the fisheries sector in 20 years’ time. It is intended:

  • to provide clarity about what we are trying to achieve

  • to set out the relative priorities of delivering socio-economic benefits and protecting the environment

  • to explain the roles and responsibilities of different stakeholders in achieving sustainability

Defra welcomes views before they finalise the document.

Send your replies by 26 April 2007. Details of how to submit views can be found on page 12 of the consultation document.

Consultation document www.defra.gov.uk/corporate/consult/fish-2027/consultation.pdf

A series of meetings about the vision are planned around the coast over the coming months. A confirmed date islisted below, and more will be added. Call 020 7270 8156 or email fish.strategy@defra.gsi.gov.uk if you there are any questions about meetings in your district.

Newlyn: 23 February - Venue to be advised.

www.defra.gov.uk/corporate/consult/fish-2027/index.htm

Consultation on a review of the England Forestry Strategy

The consultation seeks views on the future direction of Government policies for trees, woods and forestry over the coming decade. It is a review of the England Forestry Strategy, which will inform the development of a new Strategy for England later this year. The consultation has been prepared by Defra with advice from experts, particularly the Forestry Commission and the England Forestry Forum.

The current England Forestry Strategy was published in 1998. Since then the policy landscape has changed and the importance of integrating policy for trees, woods and forests into wider land use and social policy is acknowledged. In addition, the evidence base has grown and continued to increase our understanding of the benefits forestry can provide. The consultation will be used in producing a new strategy that reflects these changes and gives a clear vision for society’s use of trees, woods and forests in the next 20 years.

Published with the consultation are the following background documents:-

  • Review of Evidence Base for Forestry Policy

  • Topic paper: Access, Recreation and Tourism

  • Topic paper: Climate Change

  • Topic paper: Community Forestry

  • Topic paper: Green Infrastructure

  • Topic paper: Natural Resource Protection

  • Topic paper: Forestry and the Wood Using Industry in England

  • Information paper: Regional Issues

  • Report on the progress against the current England Forestry Strategy

These and the consultation document can be found at http://www.defra.gov.uk/corporate/consult/forestry-strategy/index.htm

Responses should be received by 4pm on 9 August 2006

A response has been submitted: WN member Mark Fisher here (PDF 62kb)

Public Consultation on the Draft Cairngorms National Park Plan

The National Park Plan will set out how the Park will be managed in the future in an integrated and sustainable way. It identifies the long-term vision for the Park, looking 25 years ahead, and a series of priorities where action is needed in the next five years. When finalised, the Plan will be approved by Ministers and will be implemented by all public bodies in the Park, together with the private, community and voluntary sectors. Implementation is expected to be in 2007.

Throughout 2005, the Cairngorms National Park Authority has consulted in depth with a range of interest groups to develop the Draft National Park Plan. This was approved by the CNPA Board on 2 December 2005 as the basis for a formal public consultation on the Plan.

A public consultation is now taking place until 30 June 2006. During this consultation, comments are sought on any aspect of the Draft National Park Plan, but particularly on what differences people expect to see in the long-term (25 years ahead) and in the short-term (five years ahead). A number of reports are available for download on the National Park Plan homepage www.cairngorms.co.uk/parkauthority/nationalparkplan.htm

Viewpoint to the Future - 12 page publication gives an overview of the Draft National Park Plan.

Looking to 2030 - the long-term vision for the Cairngorms National Park, together with the objectives which should guide management of the Park. It looks 25 years ahead and sets out the proposed approach to achieve the four aims of the Park.

Priorities for Action – 2007 – 2012 - identifies the immediate priorities on which action is needed in the next five years to move towards the long-term vision. It proposes an outline work programme between 2007 and 2012, which will be developed through the consultation. There is a detailed explanation of the seven priorities which have been identified.

State of the Park Report 2006 - Much of the data and information that has informed these publications can be found in the State of the Park Report 2006. Supporting technical annexes with detailed research information are also available.

Strategic Environmental Assessment – Environmental Report - assesses the likely environmental effects of the Draft National Park Plan, and identifies any mitigation or modification to reduce negative effects and maximise positive effects. It also reports on any changes made to the Plan as a result. It is published for consultation alongside the Draft National Park Plan, and comments on the Environmental Report will help to finalise the National Park Plan and ensure its positive effects on the environment are maximised.

The detailed assessment records for each strategic objective in the Draft National Park Plan are contained in a technical annex to the Environmental Report.

Comments can be emailed to NationalParkPlan@cairngorms.co.uk

Or contact by mail, telephone or fax:
National Park Plan Consultation, Cairngorms National Park Authority, 14 The Square, Grantown-on-Spey, Moray, PH26 3HG
Tel: 01479 873535
Fax: 01479 873527

Consultation on controlling the spread of bovine tuberculosis in cattle in high incidence areas in England: badger culling

DEFRA 15 December 2005

Defra has launched a consultation on badger culling as a means of controlling bovine TB in cattle in England.

The role of badgers in bovine TB in cattle has long been the subject of debate. The consultation document presents the scientific evidence, looks at the balance of costs and benefits, and considers the implications of a cull for animal welfare and conservation.

The consultation paper seeks views on three potential options that could be used should badger culling be introduced:

  • Individual licensing;

  • A targeted cull over specific areas linked to the incidence of TB in cattle herds;

  • A general cull over larger areas of high TB incidence.

The closing date for the consultation on badger culling is 10 March 2006. Further information including a full list of references can be found at www.defra.gov.uk/corporate/consult/badgers-tbcontrols/index.htm

Brecon Beacons National Park Management Plan

Website questionnaire, Summer/Autumn 2005

The Brecon Beacons National Park Authority (BBNPA) is starting to prepare a new management plan for the next 5 years. The BBNPA has a vision:
"That the Park’s landscape is managed sustainably with widespread appreciation of its special qualities, and that local communities benefit from its designation."

In consulting on the plan, the BBNPA is holding a number of community liaison meetings in November, at which the public can put forward what they value about the National Park and what they want to happen in it.

There is an online questionnaire for those not able to attend the meetings. You are asked whether you agree with the vision. It also asks what special qualities you think the Brecon Beacons National Park (or the parts of it that you know) has, and gives a list from which you can tick up to 10 qualities. If there are other ways in which you think that the Park is special, these can be added at the end.

The BBNP has been identified by WN members in Wales as having the potential for large area conservation. The suggestion is of one large area of rewilding in the Park within which there could also be species reintroduction. If you wish to see this become written into the next management plan, then follow this link and fill in the questionnaire
www.breconbeacons.org/manplan/manplan_questionnaire

Inquiry Into Energy In Wales

WN Evidence submitted - read it here

Welsh Affairs Committee, House Of Commons, 11 October 2005

The Welsh Affairs Committee are to undertake an inquiry into Energy in Wales. The inquiry will focus on the cost, cleanliness, efficiency and sustainability of existing energy sources  in Wales, including nuclear, wind, gas, oil and coal, and will consider the merits of newer forms of energy provision, including tidal, solar, bio-mass and geothermal sources.

The inquiry will also consider the UK Government's policy, and its approach towards the development of both traditional and innovative sustainable energy production in Wales.

Detailed terms of reference are to be issued, and interested parties are invited to submit written evidence to the Clerk of the Committee. Oral evidence sessions for the inquiry will start in mid-November and continue into next year.

Clerk of the Committee, Welsh Affairs Committee, House of Commons 7 Millbank London SW1P 3JA
Tel: 020 7219 3264 email: welshcom@parliament.uk

WN members will be responding to this inquiry. If you wish to contribute to this response, send your comments to webmaster@wildland-network.org.uk

Consultation on wild boar announced for England - DEFRA 2 September 2005

PLEASE NOTE WN hosted a workshop to discuss the implications of feral wild boar on 7th December, and thus in advance of the consultation deadline  - see the meeting report

Defra is inviting people affected by or interested in wild boar to have their say about how the animals should be managed in England.

A review of the way wild boar are managed and monitored is needed because, for the first time since becoming extinct in Britain 300 years ago, wild boar have established several small populations in England following escapes from captivity, and which are expected to grow. There are thought to be fewer than 500 feral wild boar in England, with the main population in Kent and Sussex and smaller breeding populations in Dorset and Herefordshire.

People are asked to give their views on a range of issues surrounding feral wild boar, including disease risk (Classical Swine Fever, Foot and Mouth disease and bovine Tuberculosis), potential for damage to crops and property, effects on animal exports, animal welfare, conservation and biodiversity, game and shooting interests, and human safety. Their impact on conservation habitats is likely to be mixed, probably beneficial in woodland but negative on species like ground-nesting birds. Their affect on human safety is mainly by causing road traffic collisions or even attacks.

The consultation will run until 6 January 2006. The consultation documents can be accessed at www.defra.gov.uk/corporate/consult/wild-boar/index.htm

Two responses have been submitted: WN member Derek Gow in consultation with WN members Rick Minter and Steve Carver here (PDF 106kb); WN member Mark Fisher here (PDF 19kb)

Environment Strategy Wales - consultation to help shape environmental priorities

The consultation Our Environment – Our Future – Your Views was launched on 6th July 2005. The Minister Carwyn Jones hosted the launch event at The Millennium Coastal Park in Llanelli followed by a visit to the proposed Local Nature Reserve at North Dock and Penyfan Green Network flagship site.

The consultation provided an opportunity to have a say on the priorities for the final Environment Strategy and what needs to be done to address those priority issues.

The consultation closed on 3rd October 2005. The Wildland Network response to the consultation can be read here (PDF 60kb).

Technical Advice Note (TAN) 8 - Renewable Energy in Wales

This Technical Advice Note was put out for consultation last year, the consultation closing in autumn. A consultation response was returned by Stanley Owen of the Wildland Group. An important contribution in the response is a simple map of the remoteness/wildness quality of areas in Wales next to the Draft Map of Strategic Search Areas for Onshore Wind Power in Wales.

The response can be read here (PDF 200kb)