In its continued commitment to tackling the climate and ecological emergency, Cotswold District Council is taking a leading role in supporting wildlife by helping to create a Nature Recovery Plan (NRP) for the much loved Cotswold Water Park.
Cllr Juliet Layton, Cabinet Member for Development Management and Licensing said: “The Cotswold Water Park (CWP) is a fantastic, unique asset to our District. As well as being a valued visitor destination with a wide range of attractions and a desired place to work and live, it's also rich in biodiversity and boasts a wealth of wildlife.
“By creating the Nature Recovery Plan for Cotswold Water Park, we will ensure that we protect, restore and enhance this biodiversity, maximise the benefits that the natural work provides us and guide us in new environmental initiatives across the area.”
The Cotswold Water Park NRP has been created by the Cotswold District Council in partnership with a wide range of local organisations including local councils, national government organisations, local voluntary and environmental organisations.
The main aim is to use the plan as a guide to inform many areas of decision making such as planning applications and the review of the Local Plan and other projects whilst enabling local communities and visitors to enjoy and connect with nature, benefiting health and wellbeing.
Cllr Layton continued: “We have a responsibility to not only limit our impact on local ecosystems but also actively protect and enhance them. With the creation of the NRP, we are able to continue to develop the area in a way which promotes a healthy ecosystem. This will not only benefit wildlife, but will provide a range of ‘ecosystem services’, such as clean air and water, food provisions, water management and improvements to wellbeing and the economy. These are all critical in tackling climate change, supporting healthy living and protecting our environment.”
By guiding activities within a given area, such as planning decisions and policy and funding allocation, NRPs ensure that the Council and its partners can deliver on their priorities whilst helping to ensure biodiversity is protected, enhanced and flourishing in a way that drives nature restoration and recovery.
A second Nature Recovery Plan has been created for the Cotswolds National Landscape (AONB): The Cotswold National Landscape Nature Recovery Plan (CotsNRP). Led by the Cotswolds National Landscape, the CotsNRP is focussed on actions which will enhance the special species and habitats of the Cotswolds, setting out targets, priorities and potential locations for habitat restoration as well as describing what can be done by the wider community to contribute to nature recovery.
Cllr Layton continued: “We’re dedicated to delivering on our promise to tackle the climate and ecological emergency head on and respond to the challenges presented. By endorsing a new strategic approach to nature recovery in the two Nature Recovery Plans, we can guide new and ongoing nature recovery and biodiversity enhancement initiatives across the District. We’re proud to have been part of the two partnerships that prepared and will implement the Nature Recovery Plans.”
To find out more about the Cotswold Water Park Nature Recovery Plan, please visit Cotswold District Council’s website: https://www.cotswold.gov.uk/planning-and-building/landscape/cotswold-water-park/