The information note explains Natural England’s role in assessing and granting wildlife licences for works related to the construction of the High Speed 2 railway (HS2)
When development takes place there is a possibility that construction work or other land management activities will impact on wildlife species that are protected by law. Through the planning process all developments are required to demonstrate that they have taken steps to reduce or avoid such impacts. However, in cases where impacts are unavoidable developers can apply for a licence which permits actions which would otherwise be illegal. A licence application sets out why the works are needed, how they will be undertaken and how impacts on wildlife species will be mitigated.
Examples of activities required to construct HS2 that need a wildlife license are: – The felling of trees which are used by bats for roosting or raising young. – The destruction of badger setts – The removal of ponds which are inhabited by great crested newts
More information on wildlife licensing is available at: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/wildlife-licences