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What is biodiversity offsetting?

Biodiversity offsetting is where conservation activities compensate for biodiversity loss, in a measurable way. It has the potential to deliver effective, widespread biodiversity gain for the natural environment in a way which is easy for developers to use.

How does it work?

A method is used to calculate how many ‘biodiversity units’ a developer will need to pay to offset their biodiversity loss. Offset providers then offer for sale conservation projects that deliver biodiversity units which a developer can buy.

The Warwickshire, Coventry and Solihull biodiversity offsetting pilot

The Warwickshire, Coventry and Solihull sub-region was chosen as one of the 2012-2014 six national pilot areas to trial biodiversity offsetting. Following the success of this pilot all the local planning authorities within the sub-region agreed to continue with offsetting on all minor and major applications.

Developers in pilot areas who are required to provide compensation for biodiversity loss under planning policy can choose to do so through biodiversity offsetting.

Supporting our wildlife

The Warwickshire, Coventry and Solihull sub-region has some great wildlife areas, but these are often quite fragmented. Biodiversity offsetting gives an opportunity to join up these areas and enhance the overall biodiversity of the region’s natural environment.

The map shows the area covered by the Warwickshire, Coventry and Solihull pilot.

Defra has produced guidance for the pilot areas on how a biodiversity offsetting scheme could work. The Warwickshire, Coventry and Solihull biodiversity offsetting pilot has adopted these guidelines and modified them into a local biodiversity offsetting strategy to suit our sub-region’s requirements.

The Warwickshire, Coventry and Solihull biodiversity offsetting is an important part in the delivery of the sub-regional green infrastructure strategy and is an evidence document for all Coventry, Solihull and Warwickshire core strategies.

Get involved

We are looking for landowners who would like to enter 30-year agreements to provide biodiversity enhancements to compensate for losses due to development work. If you would like to get involved please get in touch:

Telephone: 01926 418060


Post: Warwickshire County Council, Heritage and Culture, Ecology Services, Communities, Barrack Street, PO Box 43, CV34 4SX.

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