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Biodiversity Net Gain

Introduction into Biodiversity Net Gain

Biodiversity net gain (BNG) is a way of creating and improving natural habitats. The idea behind BNG is that development should leave biodiversity in a measurably better state than it was before any development took place.

BNG is defined as leaving more, bigger or better habitats for biodiversity and is demonstrated by using the DEFRA Statutory Biodiversity Metric for major applications and the DEFRA Small Sites Metric for minor applications.   

Paragraph 180 of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF, 2023) requires biodiversity net gains to be achieved.

The Government has made it a mandatory requirement for certain development to achieve a minimum of 10% BNG through the Environment Act 2021.

Mandatory BNG is required for:

  • major developments since 12 February 2024
  • minor developments from 2 April 2024

Secondary legislation and guidance have been published to support implementation.