The term refers to the inspection of trees for roosting bats. This inspection is normally done when potential roosting features have been identified on the preliminary bat roost assessment from the ground. During the aerial inspection, the surveyor (who will have a bat licence) climbs the tree and use an endoscope (a device with a screen connected to a long tube with a camera at the end) to check the inside of the tree trunk for roosting bats.
AIAs assess the potential impact of proposed developments on trees, to inform planning applications. Ecologists will make recommendations regarding which trees should be removed or retained, identify areas of conflict, and make recommendations for potential solutions.
An ASSI is the Northern Ireland equivalent of an SSSI. This is an area designated by Northern Ireland Environment Agency in order to protect the best examples of Northern Ireland’s flora, fauna, or geological or physiographical features.
AEECoW is the professional membership body for environmental and ecological clerks of work, developed with the aim of raising and maintaining the professional standards amongst those providing ECoW services.
BS3998 is the British standard which all arboriculturalists work to. It gives general recommendations for tree work, including management options for established trees and overgrown hedges.
BS5837 is the British standard which gives recommendations and guidance on the relationship between trees and design, demolition, and construction processes. It is a nationally recognised standard used by Local Planning Authorities (LPAs) to assess planning applications.
The Oxford English dictionary defines baselines as “a minimum or starting point used for comparisons”. In ecology, the term is often used to signify the description of the habitats and/or species found in an area prior to works.
The BCT works across many sectors to help those whose work brings them in contact with bats. They work to raise standards and advocate best practice, including the publication of Bat Surveys: Good Practice Guidelines, which is an essential reference guide for professional ecologists working with bats.
A BAP is an internationally recognised programme which originally derives from the Convention on Biological Diversity. The action plan programme allows governments and organisations to set out priority species and habitats for conservation action on areas under their remit and thus establish goals and targets for their protection.
According to Guide to the Convention on Biodiversity, “the principal elements of a BAP typically include: (a) preparing inventories of biological information for selected species or habitats; (b) assessing the conservation status of species within specified ecosystems; (c) creation of targets for conservation and restoration; and (d) establishing budgets, timelines and institutional partnerships for implementing the BAP”.
The BTO is an independent charity aimed at studying wildlife populations, particularly birds, to inform the public and policy decision-makers. Their volunteer surveys, such as the Breeding Bird Survey (BBS), help to monitor changes in bird populations across the UK.
BREEAM is a sustainability assessment method, which measures sustainable value in a series of categories, ranging from energy to ecology. Each of these categories addresses the most influential factors including low impact design and carbon emissions reduction, design durability and resilience, adaption to climate change, and ecological value and biodiversity protection. Within every category, developments score points – called credits – for achieving targets, and their final total determines their rating.
CIEEM is a professional membership body that represents and supports ecologists and environmental managers. Among other things the organisation establishes and upholds standards of professional competence and conduct of those who practice ecological and environmental management as a profession, as well as promoting the sharing of best practices in the sector. As such, they require members to adhere to standards of knowledge and professionalism and undertake continuing professional development.
The Oxford English dictionary defines compensation as “something that counterbalances or makes up for an undesirable or unwelcome state of affairs”. In terms of ecology, the word is normally used to mean a trade-off where the losses to wildlife are offset by the creation of wildlife opportunities of at least equal value. For example, creating a new pond should you need to destroy one for a development.
A conservation area is a place protected against undesirable changes due to its notable environmental or historical interest. These are chiefly designated by Local Authorities.
ECoW are consultants who work with companies on site, helping them to follow wildlife legislation and providing advice on compliance with the environmental planning conditions. This can include monitoring protected species and habitats, possible river and land pollution or auditing site activities, always with the goal of working collaboratively to find pragmatic solutions to any issues faced.
Like an EIA, an EcIA is a tool used to identify the impact of a project prior to the decision-making, the difference being that an EcIA focuses on the impact on wildlife. The EcIA is often part of the EIA process.
Ecology is a branch of biology (the study of life) which is concerned with the study of organisms (animals, plants, fungi and other living things) and how they interact with one another and their environment. This includes the investigation of the distribution and abundance of organisms and understanding how they affect one another, their environment and, most often in ecological consultancy, how they are affected by human activity.
The Oxford English dictionary defines enhancement as “an increase or improvement in quality, value, or extent.” In terms of ecology, this normally means an increase in the ecological value of a site or improvement in the quality of a habitat.
The aim of Environmental Impact Assessment is to protect the environment by ensuring that a local planning authority when deciding whether to grant planning permission for a project, which is likely to have significant effects on the environment, does so in the full knowledge of the likely significant effects, and takes this into account in the decision making process. The regulations set out a procedure for identifying those projects which should be subject to an Environmental Impact Assessment, and for assessing, consulting and coming to a decision on those projects which are likely to have significant environmental effects. The second aim is to ensure that the public are given early and effective opportunities to participate in the decision making procedures.
The process of Environmental Impact Assessment in the context of town and country planning in England is governed by the Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations 2017 (the ‘2017 Regulations’). These regulations apply to development which is given planning permission under Part III of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990. These regulations apply the amended EU directive “on the assessment of the effects of certain public and private projects on the environment” (usually referred to as the ‘Environmental Impact Assessment Directive’) to the planning system in England.
The EPSML is a type of licence obtained from Natural England in order to undertake actions which are otherwise illegal and will impact on European protected species. For example, if bats are known to roost on a building a company wishes to demolish, that company will require a EPSML. The application for a EPSML will require a method statement and a reason statement in order to ensure that no long-term harm is done to the conservation of the species.
The extended phase 1 habitat survey, like the phase 1 habitat survey, classifies habitats using the JNCC standards. It is called ‘extended’ because the survey includes a search for protected species and signs.
GIS are mapping tools which allow us to capture, store, manipulate, analyse, manage and present spatial or geographic data. There are a number of types of GIS software which allow us to present spatial or geographic data in maps, thus aiding our analysis and understanding of species distribution, patterns, and trends.
Habitat is usually defined as the natural environment of an organism. Simply put, it is the home of any living thing. For example, when referring to a bat’s habitat, this include the roosts (in trees and buildings) where they sleep and care for the young, the places where they eat (such as watercourses, forests, and street lights) and the hedgerows and tree lines where they commute.
Natural England states that: “In accordance with the Habitats Regulations, all competent authorities, including Natural England, must undertake a formal assessment of the implications of any new plan or project which is capable of affecting the designated interest features of European Sites before deciding whether to undertake, permit or authorise such a plan or project”.
The HSI is used to measure the suitability of ponds for great crested newts. Ten factors, including location, pond area and water quality, are measured, scored and used to calculate an overall score between 0 and 1. In general, ponds with higher HSI scores are more likely to support great crested newts than those with low scores. HSI assessments can be used to establish the need for further surveys or assess the suitability of receptor ponds in proposed mitigation schemes.
The Hedgerow Regulations 1997 are intended to protect important countryside hedgerows from destruction or damage in England and Wales.
ISO 18001, also known as OHSMS, is an international standard for health and safety and sets out good practices in occupational health and safety. Having such an accreditation certifies that the company meets the standard for management systems, planning and risk assessment, staff training and awareness, communication of safety management systems, response to emergency situations, monitoring and continual improvement.
ISO 19001 is an international standard for quality of business management. Having the ISO19001 certification means that a company meets good quality management principles required to achiev