|Publication Date:||6 March 2021|
This manual contains the key principles for the management and enhancement of biodiversity. It applies to the construction of new assets as well as the inspection and maintenance of existing assets.
This manual applies to Network Rail and its contractors involved in these activities, and other parties undertaking work on Network Rail land.
It does not apply to lineside neighbours.
This manual defines the requirements for Network Rail and its contractors to meet legislation and other compliance obligations to sustainably manage land and activities for biodiversity.
Constraints from protected sites, habitats and species are controlled by survey, mitigation, management and monitoring. Undertaking these actions will reduce the risk of breaches of wildlife legislation occurring. Taking biodiversity into account when planning, designing and implementing rail infrastructure works brings a range of other benefits including:
a) reduced risk of delays and unplanned costs from unforeseen / inadequately considered ecological constraints;
b) use of green infrastructure solutions to improve resilience of the network (flood resilience, carbon capture and storage, etc.);
c) recognition and enhanced reputation for contribution to national biodiversity goals;
d) increased regulator confidence where infrastructure works demonstrate responsible sustainability behaviours;
e) increased stakeholder confidence where infrastructure has proven sustainability credentials;
f) obligations to enhance biodiversity and improves stakeholder relations