Habitats and Wild Birds Directives – the transition period
The changes involved transferring functions from the European commission to the appropriate English authorities. There are no changes to the rules or the way you should be managing your land in accordance with the law. Carry on as you normally would. There are some important contacts below, and a message from Defra.
The Habitats and Wild Birds Directives – what happens at the end of the transition period?
The legislation transposing the EU Habitats Directive and the Wild Birds Directive has been changed so that they continue to operate effectively from 1 January 2021. This includes the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2017 (as amended) in England and Wales, and the Conservation of Offshore Marine Habitats and Species Regulations 2017 (as amended).
The changes have been made by the Conservation of Habitats and Species (Amendment) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019. The changes ensure the strict protections afforded to sites, habitats and species, including wild birds, continue. Further information about the changes introduced by the amending regulations is available on gov.uk as of 1 January 2021. Most of these changes involved transferring functions from the European Commission to the appropriate authorities in England and Wales.
All other processes or terms in the 2017 Regulations remain unchanged and existing guidance is still relevant.
Further support is available from Natural England, the Environment Agency and Forestry Commission.
Environment Agency National Customer Contact Centre (NCCC)
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