Under the Wildlife and Natural Environment Act (NI) 2011, Council as a public body has a duty to, ‘further the conservation of biodiversity so far as is consistent with the proper exercise of those functions.’ Council implements its biodiversity duty by:
- The consideration of biodiversity in decision making and implementing Council’s functions, for example, managing its greenspaces with a Pollinator Plan; minimising the impact of the re-design and red-development of parks and infrastructure on the environment; timing of construction; and protecting valuable sites.
- Work with the community to improve parks to meet their needs, for example, community involvement in the management of Bay Road Park Local Nature Reserve, community engagement in developing masterplans for green spaces and enhancing Council’s greenspaces to improve people’s health & wellbeing through the adoption of a natural capital approach.
- Provide advice on biodiversity and landscape impacts, mitigation, biodiversity net gain, conservation of species and habitats within the district for the Council, consultants, developers, businesses and the public.
- Manage Council owned infrastructure and greenspaces for biodiversity.
- Development and implementation of the Derry & Strabane Green Infrastructure Plan 2019-2032.
- Conduct habitat and species surveys on Council owned land.
- Raise awareness, conduct surveys and control invasive alien species on Council owned land, for example, Japanese knotweed, Giant hogweed, Himalayan balsam and Ash Dieback.
- Provide training for staff and partner organisations on a range of environmental issues.
- Respond to strategic consultations, provide input into strategic plans and secure funding to deliver environmental improvement projects.
Biodiversity is a core component of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, the Strategic Growth Plan and Local Development Plan. It is vital in our protection of key functioning ecosystem services, for example, flood management, pollination, the provision of clean air and water.