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      Six capitals/ Natural Capital/ Policy Recommendations

      Natural Capital - Policy Recommendations

      Policy ideas raised during think tank discussions and shaped by Bidwells and Blackstock; with the potential to Grow, Advance or Supercharge Natural Capital in the Arc.

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      Supercharge

      • Agree an Arc-wide policy that allows for cross boundary delivery of off-site biodiversity net gain outcomes, to allow the most cost-effective and strategically important conservation initiatives in the region to benefit from the resource made available through the development process.

      Advance

      • Create a crowd-source GIS platform shared by local authorities to consult on green initiatives across the Arc. This would allow local and regional stakeholder groups to submit and consult on ideas for delivering large-scale nature improvements across the region, such as the creation of pollinator habitats, enhancement of agricultural productivity, and green corridors to connect urban and rural environments. 

      • Digitally map the Oxford-Cambridge Arc’s natural capital assets, to develop a health check of the Arc’s natural capital ‘stock’. Natural capital accounting would illustrate visually how new development patterns affect and/or enhance natural resources in the region. This would also place a renewed emphasis on biodiversity net gain, and promote confidence and accountability as the region grows.

      • Local authorities in the Arc should devise natural capital management plans, labelling the principal uses of greenfield land and proposing optimal uses of underutilised built and natural assets. This would unlock the potential to convert inefficient land into wetlands and forests which intensify carbon sequestration, and rationalise the reuse of vacant space.

      Grow

      • A separate climate-relevant section should be incorporated into the National Planning Policy Framework to bring national planning policy in line with the requirements of the climate crisis.

      • ‘Very Special Circumstances' conditions for development should be widened to include net zero proposals. This criteria should apply where applicants can evidence that their proposals meet net zero targets locally and nationally. 

      Natural Capital - Articles

      Read the Natural Capital articles from our report

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