This week our planners in Newcastle attended PIA’s webinar reflecting on the past year of ‘doing’ biodiversity in a new way. Our takeaways form the session are:

  • Get out if you can – adjust your proposal to fall outside any mapped ‘trigger’ area and/or stay under the threshold-based trigger. This is good for you and good for the environment.
  • Councils are human – there is still a lot of catching up to do to make the system work. Book a pre-DA meeting to speak to them before you spend money on anything.
  • It’ll take time – as with any new process, Councils will need extra time to scrutinise biodiversity reports (BDARs) and ground-truth the findings. They’ll need more (time and info) if the reports are confusing or incomplete.
  • Consultants are human too – depending on where you are, it might be hard to find a suitable BAM assessor…and it will be worth waiting for a reputable one, rather than choosing the first available.
  • The credit market is volatile – values are based on trends, which are only just emerging. This is going to make it very hard to trust your bottom-line figure.

A pro-active approach will be critical for any proposal going through the new Offset Scheme.

Get in touch with us to find out how to navigate through this teething phase.