VEGA News Item

VEGA comments on a DEFRA consultation - 05/12/2006
Consultation on statutory guidance for Natural England on regional planning and associated matters
Consultation on statutory guidance for Natural England on regional planning and associated matters

7.1.2.a In considering the scope of this guidance do you agree that natural England should work collaboratively and in conjunction with the Environment Agency, the Forestry Commission and Government Offices as appropriate and that co-operation should be reciprocated by those bodies?

Yes. Cooperation is vital between government, academia and industry and will enhance the benefits to the environment and to the public. Some kind of local steering groups could be set up to involve all relevant stakeholders (related to 6.5.2).

7.1.2.b A Champion for the Natural Environment - changes
6.3.2 Natural England will:
• improve understanding of the natural environment by promoting and explaining its research and data to a wide range of audiences, including the interested public;

Although it is important to include the interested public, it is even more vital to include the public that might not be interested or might not know about the issues Natural England will cover. It is imperative to make the information easily available to a broader audience. School education, e.g. in modules on citizenships, could include the elements of this.

7.1.3 In considering the list strategies for which Natural England will be expected to play a major role in the preparation of, do you agree these are the main ones?

Yes, although see point 7.1.4.

7.1.4 Recognising that we cannot, nor intend, to list all potential strategies are there any you consider vitally detract from the guidance by not being listed?

There is a lack of effective mechanisms for managing e.g. agricultural activity on common land and these issues should be included in environment strategies.

7.1.5 Do you agree the role Natural England will play in the formulation of the Rural Development and Structural Fund Programmes?


7.1.6 In considering the wider role of Natural England, do you agree the part it will play in the development and implementation of regional frameworks?


7.1.7 Do you agree Natural England should determine its own level of representation at sub-regional and local level particularly when dealing with Local Strategic Partnerships, Local Delivery Frameworks and Local Area Agreements.


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