Morgan Parry, CCW (with opening remarks added to presentation)

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Morgan Parry, CCW with opening remarks added to presentation.

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  • Forum for the future’s 5 capital model adapted to fit eco services into natural capital section
  • Are the words “ecosystem” and “landscape” interchangeable? Not in scientific terms but theay convey similar meanings. But there are two competing concepts here and we must resolve this – the Ecosystem approach is currently the framework within all others sit
  • eight protected landscapes (National Parks and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty) in Wales, occupying 5,078km2, i.e. 24.4% of Wales’s terrestrial space; Seven in every eight hectares of European designated Natura 2000 sites in Wales (0.5 million ha) are marine areas. Of the 21,000km2 land and freshwater surface area of Wales, about 30% is protected in special sites for wildlife, scenic beauty or geological value.
  • WE are in fact still designating AONBs! Our Council apoproved the extention to the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley AONB in March this year and Ministerial confirmation is awaited.
  • … despite a rather unhelpful campaign to turn the AONB into a National Park! This didn’t help win over reluctant farming Unions, but Council members agreed the extension with enthusiasm.
  • Filling in the gaps between the statutory designated sites (left) with mapping of ecosystem services (right)
  • More ecosystem service maps for recreation (left) and biodiversity (right – combined data from SSSIs and BAP Priority habitats
  • Mynyddoedd Cambrian yn enghraifft da o sut mae’r tirlun ehangach yn cael ei ystyried a’r gwasanaethau ecosustemau’n cael eu gwerthfawrogi
  • Cambrian Mountains Initiative is a good example of how the wider landscape outside of designated areas can be considered and valued through the ecosystem approach
  • The same ecosystem mapping methodology applied to a local authority area – in this case Bridgend County Borogh Council. These will be used as case studies for NEF
  • Map showing all types of green infrastructure, urban and rural This map shows the spread of green infrastructure across Bridgend County Borough Council – the map is based on a range of datasets such as the protected sites series, CCW’s accessible natural greenspace dataset, woodlands and wildlife trust sites. After combining these datasets the map was manually checked to ensure all areas of greenspace were picked up, including the smaller sites such as domestic gardens. This map shows that even in a reasonably densely urbanised area, there are considerable areas of green space.
  • Map recreational opportunities and health statistics – the idea being to promote more access in areas it will make most difference to health This map shows the level of health deprivation in Bridgend, with the darkest colours showing the most deprived areas, the lighter ones the less deprived areas. The pink lines show the areas that are accessible within 5km of settlements – research shows that most people do not travel more than this distance for the kind of exercise that can lead to health benefits (i.e. 30 minutes moderate exercise 4-5 times a week). The map also shows the recreational opportunities in Bridgend (i.e. the hatched areas and the areas in green). Analysis such as this can start to highlight areas where investment in green infrastructure can produce, as well as an increase in biodiversity, additional benefits, e.g by providing an outdoor recreation area in an area of high health deprivation.
  • Look at recreation – research shows people travel under 5km, need to look at mulitple benefits Area part of the ERDF Valleys Regional Park programme - £21.75 investment in recreation facilities Fantastic recreation resource already but under-managed - opportunity to contribute to improving physical activity and mental well-being - but underutilised - need to engage with the health promotion teams and community development workers to make it part of their strategy too - opportunities for community social enterprise whilst managing the natural environment assets.
  • These three ideas don’t figure strongly in the debate in Wales
  • Morgan Parry, CCW (with opening remarks added to presentation)

    1. 1. Politics, Protected Landscapes and the Ecosystem Approach in Wales Morgan Parry Chair, Countryside Council for Wales
    2. 2. <ul><li>NAAONB Conference, Falmouth </li></ul><ul><li>Presentation by Morgan Parry, Chair, Countryside Council for Wales </li></ul><ul><li>Although funding is a major concern for all AONBs I’m not going to talk about money </li></ul><ul><li>today. Neither can I say much about the future of AONBs in Wales because the new </li></ul><ul><li>Government has yet to address the issue of protected areas and ideas are in development. </li></ul><ul><li>The Welsh Election May 2011 returned a Labour Administration, with no overall majority </li></ul><ul><li>New Minister of Environment & Sustainability is John Griffiths </li></ul><ul><li>No significant change of direction from the preceding Government has been signalled yet </li></ul><ul><li>but all protected areas will come under spotlight, we will have to show how they are core </li></ul><ul><li>areas for delivering a range of ecosystem services. </li></ul><ul><li>The big show in town is the Natural Environment Framework, Wales’ equivalent to the </li></ul><ul><li>Natural Environment White Paper in England. Based on National Ecosystem </li></ul><ul><li>Assessment, but less on Lawton Report on Biodiversity, it will be broader in scope than </li></ul><ul><li>the England White Paper. Discussions about this are intimately linked with the setting up </li></ul><ul><li>of a Single Environment Body created from CCW/EA/FC. To a degree, the new body will </li></ul><ul><li>be designed around the ecosystem approach. </li></ul><ul><li>Discussion is also taking place around the potential of newly acquired primary legislative </li></ul><ul><li>powers a Sustainable Development Bill may put the SD Duty on a firmer legal footing. </li></ul><ul><li>An Environment Act, possibly to be scheduled later in the term of this Government, may </li></ul><ul><li>consolidate the provisions of existing UK legislation into new Welsh measures, and could </li></ul><ul><li>update the functions and duties of the existing public agencies. </li></ul><ul><li>A “Welsh Way” will emerge, and different from that in other 3 nations of UK. But AONBs </li></ul><ul><li>have e been a great success story and there is no reason to think that they won’t be an </li></ul><ul><li>important part of the landscape in the future. </li></ul><ul><li>I will finish with a look at some possible alternative scenarios, based on different political and </li></ul><ul><li>economic trajectories. Neither are necessarily applicable to England or Wales and the best solution </li></ul><ul><li>may be a combination of different approaches and economic tools. But they illustrate the increasing </li></ul><ul><li>influence of political and ethical choices that are being made in Wales and England. </li></ul><ul><li>The interpretation of these scenarios are my own opinions and do not represent the views of CCW </li></ul>
    3. 3. <ul><li>LIVING WALES </li></ul><ul><li>Welsh Labour in government will reassess the principles which </li></ul><ul><li>underpin A Living Wales –our Natural Environment Framework. In </li></ul><ul><li>particular Welsh Labour recognises that the environment: </li></ul><ul><li>• has an intrinsic value </li></ul><ul><li>• is our life support system </li></ul><ul><li>• is a finite source of raw materials and resources </li></ul><ul><li>• is central to our quality of life, sense of place, health and wellbeing </li></ul><ul><li>• underpins our economic development </li></ul><ul><li>WELSH LABOUR IS COMMITED TO: </li></ul><ul><li>• recognising and living within environmental limits, locally and globally </li></ul><ul><li>• ensuring that all policies take the environment into account, in </li></ul><ul><li>accordance with our statutory Sustainable Development duty </li></ul><ul><li>• stimulating and enabling collaboration across the Welsh public sector </li></ul><ul><li>• working with business and voluntary sector partners </li></ul><ul><li>• encouraging individual citizens and communities to live in an </li></ul><ul><li>environmentally sustainable way, and providing leadership by </li></ul><ul><li>acting now for the future </li></ul>Welsh Labour Programme for Government
    4. 4. <ul><li>OUR GUIDING AIM IS TO ENSURE THAT WALES HAS INCREASINGLY </li></ul><ul><li>RESILIENT AND DIVERSE ECOSYSTEMS THAT DELIVER ECONOMIC, </li></ul><ul><li>ENVIRONMENTAL AND SOCIAL BENEFITS, WITH </li></ul><ul><li>a focus on the value of the environment as a whole, </li></ul><ul><li>opportunities for wider public involvement. </li></ul><ul><li>a positive approach for landowners, farmers, fisheries, forestry, developers and regulated industries… </li></ul><ul><li>delivering positive environmental change, not just conserving what we have </li></ul><ul><li>changes in the way we deliver policy, make decisions and regulate the environment…. </li></ul><ul><li>ensuring the public bodies, charged with protecting and enhancing the environment are equipped to deliver the new approach </li></ul>Welsh Government Statement 15 th June 2011
    5. 5. cultural services
    6. 6. Ecosystems or Landscapes? National Ecosystem Assessment
    7. 7. Convention on Biological Diversity <ul><li>“The ecosystem approach does not preclude other management and conservation approaches, such as … protected areas, and single-species conservation programmes, but could integrate all these approaches and other methodologies to deal with complex situations” </li></ul>
    8. 8. CCW view <ul><li>Protected Areas will be managed for both </li></ul><ul><li>features and ecosystem services set in a </li></ul><ul><li>whole environment context and involving </li></ul><ul><li>adaptive management and ecosystem </li></ul><ul><li>restoration </li></ul>
    9. 9. Protected Areas <ul><li>30% of Wales’ land is protected for it’s wildlife, scenic beauty or geological value </li></ul><ul><li>7/8 of the area of Natura 2000 sites are marine SACs </li></ul>
    10. 10. Clwydian Range and Dee Valley AONB extension
    11. 13. Report on CCW website -
    12. 14. Cambrian Mountains Initiative
    13. 15. Aims of Cambrian Mountains Initiative Support the development of sustainable, rural communities within the area of the Cambrian Mountains: Sustain the environment of the area Work with communities, producers and tourism providers within the surrounding area of influence; Ensure the future sustainability of Welsh family farms; Achieve the highest standards of land management and animal welfare; Provide the best Welsh welcome and a high quality of service to visitors to the area Use an ecosystems approach to managing our natural capital
    14. 20. What of the future? <ul><li>Some dilemmas, options and alternative scenarios….. </li></ul><ul><li>And some potential fault-lines between Wales and England </li></ul>
    15. 21. England White Paper <ul><li>We will create new Nature Improvement Areas (NIAs) to enhance and reconnect nature on a significant scale, where the opportunities and benefits justify such action. Local partnerships will come together to form NIAs. </li></ul><ul><li>Through reforms of the planning system, we will take a strategic approach to planning for nature within and across local areas…. We will retain the protection and improvement of the natural environment as core objectives of the planning system. </li></ul><ul><li>We will establish a new, voluntary approach to biodiversity offsets and test our approach in pilot areas. </li></ul>
    16. 22. <ul><li>Land banking/biodiversity offsetting would </li></ul><ul><li>be innovative and distinctive for the new Government in England </li></ul><ul><li>potentially create bigger areas than currently required under Section 106 </li></ul><ul><li>reduce the regulatory burden on developers </li></ul><ul><li>compensate society for loss of environmental assets rather than seeking to prevent it </li></ul><ul><li>risk being abused by legal manouvres and accountancy tricks </li></ul><ul><li>supporting the existing statutory requirements would </li></ul><ul><li>be a recognition that development needs regulating under a legal framework </li></ul><ul><li>maintain the integrity of existing designated sites wherever possible </li></ul><ul><li>protect more rigorously protected species, habitats and landscapes </li></ul><ul><li>retain a key role for local authority staff and Country Agencies </li></ul>Market Mechanisms or Regulation?
    17. 23. <ul><li>A conceptual framework based on science would </li></ul><ul><li>emphasise the principles underpinning ecosystem function </li></ul><ul><li>recognise and address the drivers of ecological change </li></ul><ul><li>accept the evidence for environmental limits having been exceeded </li></ul><ul><li>focus on the supporting services such as soil formation, nutrient cycling </li></ul><ul><li>prioritise restoration of habitats and the reduction of negative impacts </li></ul><ul><li>invest in resilience to withstand climatic and other changes </li></ul><ul><li>Chosing economics as a starting point however leads us to </li></ul><ul><li>emphasise the links between ecosystems and human wellbeing </li></ul><ul><li>accept the inevitability of ecological change </li></ul><ul><li>focus on the provisioning services such as food, timber and energy </li></ul><ul><li>prioritise creation of new economically valuable habitats or landscapes </li></ul><ul><li>discount the economic impact of climatic and other changes </li></ul><ul><li>propose technological solutions to overcoming natural limits </li></ul>Science v. Economics
    18. 24. <ul><li>Spatial planning </li></ul><ul><li>is a partnership approach with stakeholders agreeing “what goes where” </li></ul><ul><li>is participatory and democratic, but time-consuming </li></ul><ul><li>builds on community-led approaches to sustainable development </li></ul><ul><li>is resisted by planning professionals (in Wales at least!) </li></ul><ul><li>Economic Valuation </li></ul><ul><li>is technocratic, with values being determined by experts </li></ul><ul><li>currently more robust for land-uses with tradeable products or services </li></ul><ul><li>proposed change in land-use may be resisted by residents and landowners </li></ul><ul><li>method of capitalising on the potential values still under-developed </li></ul>Spatial Planning v. Economic Valuation
    19. 25. <ul><li>The Big Society </li></ul><ul><li>is a big component of the England White Paper but resisted in Wales </li></ul><ul><li>civil society/voluntary sector is essential for local action and participation </li></ul><ul><li>tradition of strong community in Wales but also a heavy dependency on the institutions of the state </li></ul><ul><li>Big Society may therefore depend on a Big State for funding, skills, resources </li></ul><ul><li>Strong role for state </li></ul><ul><li>few people want to be actively involved in managing of public goods and services </li></ul><ul><li>people expect “the experts” to safeguard the environment on their behalf </li></ul><ul><li>legal responsibility for addressing many global challenges rests with the State </li></ul><ul><li>Welsh Government is small and realtively close to its citizens </li></ul>Big Society, or the buck stops with Government?
    20. 26. <ul><li>Centralising </li></ul><ul><li>moving powers from London to Cardiff is main agenda </li></ul><ul><li>Welsh Government, 12 years after devolution, is still sub-optimal </li></ul><ul><li>emphasis will be on Wales-wide approaches led by Government </li></ul><ul><li>Strong drive to achieve national or international goals on climate etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Localising </li></ul><ul><li>Participation enhanced, empowerment engendered and leadership encouraged </li></ul><ul><li>Diversity of solutions emerge, tailored to local conditions and needs </li></ul><ul><li>Needs targets set by a higher authority for local choice and determination </li></ul>Centralisation or localisation
    21. 27. 3 points to take away <ul><li>Many shared principles, frameworks and international standards </li></ul><ul><li>Wales will set its own course according to its own politics and values </li></ul><ul><li>We need to strengthen UK institutions like NAAONB </li></ul>

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