1. Putting ecosystems alongside climate as a top priority in all policy considerations.

The more ecosystems are enhanced the more carbon we sequester and the healthier the world becomes. Natural climate solutions must not be seen as a substitute for reduction of CO2; they complement reduction strategies. It is vital that we identify the drivers of ecosystem loss and use the Planning system to prevent them as much as possible.


  1. 10% biodiversity net gain is woefully unambitious, difficult to measure, and impractical to monitor for 30 years. A 10% biodiversity gain over the span of the development’s construction is more practical, and while more ambitious is certainly achievable.


  • All new buildings and developments to respect existing habitat and include provision for new habitat = bee bricks, bat and owl boxes.
  • "Every new housing development to provide minimum 5sq/m of pond/marsh/reedbed per 5 houses. Every new development of 5+ houses must have a village green, a pond and grass play area for children with native hedging and 20% wild borders" (Ref: A New Deal for Nature commissioned by C Lucas published Nov 2019)
  • All mature native trees should be automatically subject to a TPO with stronger fines in place for breach (at present many developers just include TPO fines in their budget).


  1. We need clear designation of specific geographic areas and related policies for the 'Forest for Cornwall'. What is to be planted and where? (A ‘Reforestation Network’ that brings together relevant stakeholders could facilitate this.)

The Forest for Cornwall won’t just happen with aspirational words. Given the time it will take to achieve, we urgently need a clear plan that details how it can be achieved, recognising that a wide range of stakeholders will be needed to achieve it, and that it faces various ongoing threats (private tree felling, lack of coordination between land-owners, failure to protect native species against invasive fast-growing trees - e.g. Sycamore, etc.). A ‘Reforestation Network’, of the type that has been used effectively to protect other native species (e.g. could provide a mechanism to bring relevant stakeholders together. In particular we would like to see clear recognition that isolated trees have less value than large contiguous areas.

A clear plan for how to achieve a Forest for Cornwall would then inform the number and type of trees required for any given planning application.