A masterclass delivered - biodiversity net gain
As summer faded, ecologists returned home and IEMA hosted a masterclass on biodiversity net gain (BNG).
The importance of BNG for biodiversity outcomes is now widely recognised, and demand for such an event was high. Delegates spanned a range of professional contexts covering impact assessment, development and construction, and were all looking for a more in-depth understanding of BNG policy and practice.
Sessions were led by Tom Butterworth of WSP and Julia Baker of Balfour Beatty – two of the UK’s leading BNG professionals and authors of the BNG guidance jointly published by IEMA, the Construction Industry Research and Information Association, and the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management.
The masterclass covered good practice principles, regulatory frameworks and real-life examples of BNG design and implementation on development projects. Thorny questions included BNG and linear projects, available protection for compensation sites, skills and capacity gaps, and variable approaches across local authorities.
The online masterclass approach is a new development for IEMA, providing closer engagement for a small group of professionals. This is an approach IEMA can explore further as we learn from the pandemic and look at new ways to #BuildBackBetter.