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Biodiversity net gain

Helping landowners and developers meet biodiversity net gain commitments through advice, site survey and assessment, enhancement, restoration, creation, and onward habitat management.

We provide end-to-end capability to support your organisation with biodiversity net gain responsibilities from advice, site survey and assessment, enhancement, restoration, creation, and onward habitat management, so that you can remain compliant with legislation, reduce the impact of your development, as well as meeting your Net-Zero and ESG targets.

What is biodiversity net gain?

Biodiversity net-gain (BGN) is an approach to development and land management that aims to leave the natural environment in a measurably better state than it was beforehand.

The Environment Act 2021 makes it mandatory for any new development in England to deliver a minimum 10% net gain on the biodiversity of its aquatic and terrestrial environments, and schemes will need to be monitored for a minimum of 30 years.

Traditionally, the construction of homes, businesses, and infrastructure has damaged habitats and depleted the environment. Biodiversity net gain is designed to reverse that harm, requiring developers to create or enhance habitats and boost biodiversity as an intrinsic part of each project. These improvements can be delivered onsite, offsite, or through a combination of approved solutions.

Biodiversity net gain legislation

In line with the Environment Act 2021, all planning permissions granted in England must provide at least 10% biodiversity net gain. With a few exceptions, the law applies to developments that impact urban and rural spaces, hedgerows, linear areas such as roads and railway tracks, and aquatic environments like rivers and streams.

For each development, businesses need to create a biodiversity net gain plan for local authority approval. This document details:

  • Current habitat conditions, based on ecological assessments
  • Strategies for increasing biodiversity by at least 10%
  • Methods of measuring and maintaining improvements for 30 years

Biodiversity net gain is determined using Defra’s biodiversity metric, a habitat-based approach that evaluates an area’s value to wildlife.


22 years of providing water and ecology solutions.


Team of 200 consultants across the UK.


12 biodiversity net gain initiatives completed to date.


All our ecologists are degree-educated and members of chartered institutes.


Innovative techniques such as UKHab mapping software used to survey most effectively.

How we can support you with biodiversity net gain


  • Regulatory business planning, investment cases and compliance - price review, WINEP, WRMP, DWMPs
  • Business governance, risk, and value, optioneering processes
  • Long-term delivery strategies
  • Culture and behaviour change
  • Facilitation
  • Stakeholder engagement
  • Supply chain, procurement, and contractual expertise
  • Integration advice on how biodiversity net gain may interact with emerging and evolving nature-based solutions, nutrient neutrality, and ESG
  • Natural and built asset data strategies and management
  • Site selection, optioneering, and concept-detailed engineering design and build advice to co-deliver benefits

Site survey and assessment

  • UKHab and biodiversity net gain condition assessment surveys
  • Biodiversity net gain assessment for development
  • Advice for planning and development around biodiversity net gain
  • Constraints and opportunity plans for landowners and developers
  • Biodiversity net gain assessment for landowners
  • Land conversion for biodiversity net gain
  • Advice on habitat creation, enhancement opportunities, and habitat management for biodiversity net gain
  • Using biodiversity net gain for habitat restoration and rewilding projects

Habitat enhancement to management

  • A full suite of land-based surveys (such as soils, topography and land use) to ensure habitat proposals are achievable, appropriate, cost-effective and sustainable in the long term
  • Hydrological assessments to ensure biodiversity net gain success (such as conceptual water balances, water level management plans and silt management plans)
  • Detailed design proposals ranging from small scale enhancements to large scale habitat creation exceeding 250 hectares
  • Habitat management plans to ensure long term delivery of biodiversity net gain and consider the legacy of proposals (i.e. who will be responsible for each element, such as vegetation maintenance, sluice maintenance, health and safety considerations)
  • Advice on wider legislative requirements related to habitat creation such as land drainage consent, planning requirements, flood risk implications and protected species mitigation
  • Collaborative work with conservation stakeholders to maximise the value and sustainability of biodiversity net gain

Looking for support with biodiversity net gain?

Schedule a meeting with one of our specialists to discuss your biodiversity net gain plan.

Contact our experts