Policy NAT2 Species Protected by Law

European Protected Species

Planning permission will only be granted for a development proposal that is not likely to harm a European protected species.

In exceptional circumstances a development proposal that is likely to harm these species may only be permitted where:

  1. there are no alternative solutions; and
  2. it is required for imperative reasons of overriding public interest; and
  3. there is no detriment to the maintenance of the population of the species at a favourable conservation status; and
  4. compensatory measures are agreed and fully secured.
National Protected Species

Planning permission will only be granted for a development proposal that is not likely to harm any other statutorily protected species and which can be adequately mitigated or compensated against.

Development proposals are required to be sensitive to all protected species, and sited and designed to protect them, their habitats and prevent deterioration and destruction of their breeding sites or resting places. Seasonal factors will also be taken into account.

Justification and Amplification

The presence or potential presence of a legally protected species in an area, and the habitats on which they are dependant, are important considerations in formulating and assessing development proposals. The planning and design of any development which has the potential to impact on a protected species is required to take into account the level of protection afforded by legislation and any impacts must be fully considered. In addition, seasonal factors should be taken into account when assessing development proposals that could impact upon protected species, for example nesting seasons. This is also important in determining when surveys should be carried out to establish the presence of a species on site.

Where exceptional circumstances are substantiated, adequate mitigation and compensatory measures will be secured through conditions attached to planning permission or a planning agreement.

European protected species are listed under Annex IV of the Habitats Directive (transposed under Schedule 2 of the Habitats Regulations) and must be subject to a system of strict protection. Other national protected species are listed under the Wildlife Order under Schedules (1), (5) & (8). The granting of planning permission does not obviate the holder of ensuring legal compliance with other legislative requirements.

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