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Economy And Infrastructure Committee Approve Council's Draft Ecology Strategy And Action Plan

3rd May 2024

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Members of Highland Council's Economy and Infrastructure Committee today (2 May 2024) approved the local authority's draft Ecology Strategy and Action Plan which will now move forward to an 12-week public consultation.

The Ecology Strategy sets out an ambitious set of actions to tackle biodiversity loss and address the ecological emergency.

Chair of the Economy and Infrastructure Committee, Cllr Ken Gowans, said: "This strategy reflects the Council's position as set out in the Administration Programme, Our Future Highland, for 2022-27, which recognises the importance of accelerating our response to the climate and ecological emergency declared in 2019.

"The actions we take to address both the climate and biodiversity are fundamental to our wellbeing by integrating biodiversity conservation measures into the Council’s activities to address the direct and indirect drivers of biodiversity loss, towards achieving our net zero targets."

The Council’s Net Zero Strategy, approved at Full Council in May 2023, identified as a priority outcome a strategy to address the ecological emergency to enhance biodiversity and carbon sequestration.

The purpose of the Ecology Strategy is to set out and define a series of key actions and activities that will help the Council deliver positive action to tackle biodiversity loss and start to address the ecological emergency for the benefit of its environment, economy, and communities.

The actions identified in the Action Plan concentrate on the three key areas where the Council can make a substantial contribution to tackling the ecological emergency in a Highland context.

These are:

the management of our estate

influencing others through policy and regulation

working in partnership with communities and stakeholders

Following the conclusion of the public consultation, all comments will be collated and considered. The finalised Ecology Strategy and Action Plan will be presented to the Climate Change Committee for comment after which it will be presented to the Economy and Infrastructure Committee for formal approval.

The Draft Ecology Strategy and Action Plan can be seen at under Item 11 at Appendix 1
https://www.highland.gov.uk/meetings/meeting/4964/economy_and_infrastructure_committee

 

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