Environment Protection

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 19th July 2021.

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Photo of Lord Goodlad Lord Goodlad Conservative

To ask Her Majesty's Government which areas will (1) be designated national parks, (2) be designated areas of outstanding natural beauty, or (3) otherwise protected from development, by 2030.

Photo of Lord Benyon Lord Benyon The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Natural England, as the statutory advisor to the Government on landscape, announced on 24 June 2021 an ambitious programme to create and improve protected landscapes.

As part of this programme Natural England has with immediate effect started work to consider the creation of two new Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONBs), the Yorkshire Wolds and the Cheshire Sandstone Ridge; and expansions of both the Surrey Hills and Chilterns AONBs.

The Government has committed to protect and improve 30% of UK’s land for biodiversity by 2030. To meet this commitment, Natural England will also undertake an all-England landscapes assessment to identify any remaining places suitable for National Park or AONB designation.

We have announced our intention to publish a Green Paper on nature recovery, including wildlife reform, before the end of the year. This consultation will provide the opportunity to influence how we can improve our wildlife laws to deliver our ambitions for nature recovery, including improving sites and habitat protections, aligning these with the Government’s strategic priorities for nature and biodiversity.

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