With only a week to go before the Gloucestershire Local Nature Partnership Green Infrastructure Symposium on the 26th October, many of the local councils and other organisations have been signing up to the Green Infrastructure Pledge in advance to show their commitment to recognising the importance of our natural environment and the shared resources on which we rely.
Current signatories include:
The Pledge highlights that we must meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. As signatories, they have agreed to promote, create and enhance green infrastructure in Gloucestershire for the benefit of all, working in cross-sector partnership wherever possible to deliver the following actions:
01: We will commit to working in favour of sustainable development, delivering against the revised National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) (July 2018) where is states development and policies should make sufficient provision for “conservation and enhancement of the natural, built and historic environment, including landscapes and green infrastructure, and planning measures to address climate change mitigation and adaptation.” [para. 20].
02: We will aim to utilise appropriate, high-quality green infrastructure, wherever possible, to protect lives, communities, wildlife and economic growth from the likely effects of development and climate change – including flooding and pollution – through such methods as natural flood management systems, street trees and sustainable drainage systems.
03: We commit to delivering healthy, inclusive and safe places as required in chapter 8 of the revised NPPF, acknowledging the importance of green and blue spaces as essential components to health and happiness of our communities. We seek to utilise tools that help us identify what ‘good’ green infrastructure looks like and ensure sufficient thought is put into providing relevant, high-quality, safe and accessible green space for people that encourages active lifestyles, social inclusion and community engagement with nature.
04: We will take a strategic approach to maintaining and enhancing networks of habitats and green infrastructure, minimising impacts on the natural environment, whilst providing net gains for biodiversity and enhancing natural capital on a landscape scale – as outlined within the revised NPPF [para. 170/171]. In doing so we will also contribute to the ‘Nature Recovery Network’ outlined within the 25 Year Environment Plan, utilising green infrastructure to link habitats for the recovery of our wildlife and the wider range of public benefits this network will provide.
05: We will seek to apply high quality green infrastructure principles to the retrofit of buildings as well as to new developments. We understand that green infrastructure can help build a strong, competitive economy whilst positively impacting lives through regeneration initiatives. Green infrastructure can make properties more sustainable, increase housing value, boost climate resilience, promote social inclusion, and improve desirability of local areas.