As of May 2021, the Government released The England Tree Action Plan 2021-2024, which covers a range of topics and highlights the issues associated with England’s forest and tree cover. The action plan, in conjunction with many other plans and initiatives, aims to turn the tide on biodiversity loss and tackle climate change in the long term, choosing to build back greener and leave the environment in a better condition than when it was found.
Noting that sustained efforts since 1924 has increased woodland cover from 5.1% to 10.1%, it is stated that this generation must take bold actions now in response to climate change and biodiversity loss; and to do this the Government has committed to increasing the yearly tree planting rate to 30,000 hectares across the UK by 2024 and spending £500 million of the £640 million Nature for Climate Fund to achieve this.
Alongside financial incentives and support to land-owners to create more woodlands, there is a collaborative partnership with the Forestry Commission, Natural England and The Environment Agency, to provide guidance and deliver these ambitions. There is great emphasis to ensure that ‘the right tree is in the right place’ to obtain the broadest benefits; including but not limited to carbon sequestration, biodiversity gain, flood prevention and improved quality of water, soil and air.
Adding to the ‘build back better and greener’ idea, there would be added social and economic benefits to more woodland across the UK, creating opportunities for woodland management practice, greater supply of UK wood products, building nursery capacity and access to woodland from the local public.
The Association for Renewable Energy & Clean Technology (REA) states that the significant omission of Bioenergy and Bioenergy related products associated with woodland management may result in the Government failing to meet its ambitions. Policy Analyst Sam Tickle at the REA states that “the Government will not meet its ambitions by excluding key drivers in forestry” compounded by the fact that in the initial consultation there were “foresters outlining energy forest plantations and bringing woods into management as two of their
top four priorities”.
LC Energy works with foresters to facilitate the growth of quality wood, process more than 60,000 tonnes of timber per annum, whilst managing residue materials to produce sustainable fuel, aiding the UK’s Net Zero targets.
LC Energy’s sustainability consultancy works in partnership with clients to enhance their supply chain by developing corporate environmental policies and carbon reduction strategies, including the project management of tree planting, Woodland Carbon Units, biodiversity net gain, habitat banking and carbon offsetting opportunities. With considerable understanding of complex woodland habitat systems and project management, LC Energy has the experience, reputation and contacts to support the UK government in delivering its climate change and biodiversity promise.
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