Planning Permission: The Importance of Ecology

When embarking on a new development project, specific procedures must be followed in order to facilitate the project’s progression. Securing planning permission is a fundamental requirement, and a crucial aspect of this endeavour involves conducting an evaluation of the proposed site to identify the presence of protected species and their habitats.

Planning permission plays a pivotal role in shaping the built environment while also bearing a significant responsibility for preserving and protecting the natural environment. Ecological surveys and reports play a pivotal role in informing planning applications and can determine whether or not a development is granted planning permission.

Ecological requirements for planning applications

Ecological requirements for planning applications are essential elements that must be fulfilled when seeking approval for a development. These requirements aim to ensure that the proposed project considers and mitigates potential environmental impacts. The most common ecological requirements include:

Ecological Surveys: Submission of comprehensive ecological surveys and assessments to identify existing flora, fauna, and habitats on the project site. These surveys often involve studying the site’s ecosystems, and ecological value.

Protected Species Assessment: Determination of whether any legally protected species, such as endangered animals or rare plants, are present on or near the development site. This may require surveys for species like bats, birds, amphibians, and reptiles.

Tree surveys: A thorough assessment is made of how the proposed development may affect the health, structure, and stability of existing trees. This includes evaluating the potential for root damage, soil compaction, and changes in water availability.

Biodiversity net gain: Biodiversity net gain is becoming a mandatory requirement in many jurisdictions. When submitting a planning application, developers are often required to include a BNG assessment as part of their proposal.

Alongside ecological requirements there are other planning requirements you may need to obtain, such as building regulations approval, before building work can commence. More information can be found on the planning portal.

How can Collington Winter assist with planning permission?

Collington Winter Environmental believe in a pragmatic approach to development. We meet the needs of developers, whilst ensuring positive outcomes for wildlife. We believe that an early consultation and in-depth knowledge of ecological best practice is the best way to improve your chances at obtaining planning permission and ensuring your project is a permitted development.

If you are interested in our services, contact us using the form below. You can also contact our Ecology Director, Olivia Collington, via email at

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23 Bark Street East, 1st Floor, Bolton, BL1 2BQ

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Future Business Centre, Cambridge Campus, Kings Hedges Road, Cambridge, CB4 2HY


Head Office: 01204 939 608

Dumfries Office: 01387 378208

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