Industry seeks political backing for European landscape policy

Landscape and environmental bodies are urging the Government to give more political backing to environmental policy by showing greater commitment to the European Landscape Convention (ELC).

More than 60 organisations and individuals have signed a letter addressed to prime minister David Cameron and the leaders of the Scottish, Welsh and Northern Ireland administrations asking them to honour the ELC agreement by showing greater support for landscape and biodiversity issues.

The ELC, signed by the UK Government in 2006, was developed to encourage greater protection, management and planning of landscapes across Europe. Government agency Natural England was appointed to inform local planning authorities on the principles of the convention.

The letter asks the parties to confirm that new landscape legislation will comply with guidelines included in the convention and that Defra's forthcoming natural environment white paper, to be published around April, will centre on the convention's principles.

But former Countryside Commission director Adrian Phillips said many issues concerning nature conservation and biodiversity protection were still being overlooked.

"They haven't figured very highly in recent environmental debate, which has been very much dominated by climate change issues," he added. "Biodiversity in the UK is being threatened in an unacceptable way and we need to do more to protect it."

Phillips said ministers needed to "brush up their acts" and encourage civil servants to take the convention seriously: "Quality of life in Britain depends on - among other things - the quality of the surrounding landscape and you only have to look to realise there is an awful lot that needs to be done."

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

Sargent's solutions - how to attract the best staff for your business

Sargent's solutions - how to attract the best staff for your business

There are ways to find quality candidates for horticultural jobs if you widen your search parameters, Alan Sargent suggests.

Business Planning - Staff are your greatest asset

Business Planning - Staff are your greatest asset

An effective strategy to retain staff is the best way for any business to avoid a potential recruitment crisis, Neville Stein advises.

IoG Saltex 2017 - Kit showcase

IoG Saltex 2017 - Kit showcase

Mowers, turf care, battery equipment, seeds, arboriculture kit and weed control will all see a wide range of new releases at Saltex, Sally Drury reports.

Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

IOG Saltex

Get set for IoG Saltex 2017 with our comprehensive show guide and exhibitor info.

Are you a landscape supplier?

Horticulture Week Landscape Project Leads

If so, you should be receiving our new service for Horticulture Week subscribers delivering landscape project leads from live, approved, planning applications across the UK.

Industry Data

An exclusive report for HW subscribers revealing the key development trends, clients and locations for 2017.

Products & Kit Resources

BALI National Landscape Awards 2016

Read all about the winning projects in the awards, run in association with Horticulture Week.

Noel Farrer

Founding partner of Farrer Huxley Associates Noel Farrer on landscape and green space

Read Noel Farrer