Japanese knotweed conference announced

Figures from across the public and private sector will be discussing strategies to deal with non-native invasive plants at a national trade body conference.

The Property Care Association’s second annual Invasive Weed Conference features informed speakers with expertise in areas including law, academia, ecology and technology. 

Entitled ‘Risk, Roots and Research’ the event takes place on 22 November at the Institution of Engineering Technology (IET) Savoy Place, London.

The first session, ‘Risk’ includes legal insight from barrister Leo Charalambides.

There’s also an update on the current situation regarding Japanese knotweed and property risk from James Ginley, Head of Professional Risk at Legal and General.

The second session, ‘Roots’ includes an understanding of surveying and mapping invasive non-native species from Dr Mark Fennell, Principal Ecologist at AECOM, as well as an overview of the management of invasive weed remediation works from Richard Newis of Ashfield Japanese Knotweed.

A response to the growing issue of aquatic invasive plants will also be presented in this session by Dr Johan van Valkenburg of the National Plant Protection Organisation, the Netherlands.

The final session, ‘Research’ features Dr Richard Shaw of CABI UK, Dr Daniel Jones of Swansea University and Dr John Bailey, formerly of the University of Leicester who will cover topics including biocontrol and physiochemical control optimisation.

The conference will then draw to a close with a panel debate featuring Network Rail’s Dr Neil Strong, Trevor Renals of the Environment Agency, Barbara Whitcombe of Leicester City Council, Rodger Burnett of Charles Lyndon and Paul Cutbill of Countrywide Surveying Services.

Professor Max Wade, Chairman of the PCA’s Invasive Weed Control Group, said: "A lack of information is one of the biggest obstacles to achieving the effective management of Japanese knotweed and other non-native invasive plants in the UK. 

"Our intention is to offer a level-headed and evidence based approach to tackling the issue and create a platform for delegates to access a wide-range of expertise from high calibre, informed sources.

"This conference offers a significant opportunity to access the latest thinking, research and knowledge at a single event."

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