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Irwin Mitchell

Environmental Law Update

Claire Petricca-Riding is a Partner and Head of Planning and Environment at law firm Irwin Mitchell, she gives an environmental law update....

movers Irwin Mitchell web"This year has been an usual one, not only due to the global Covid-19 pandemic which allowed us all to take stock and the environment to have a much needed re-set, but it has been monumental in terms of bringing forward proposals for the way in which we preserve, protect, enhance and monitor the environment. Never before have we seen such collaboration of different Government departments and whilst some argue the plans do not go far enough, they are at the very least, a step in the right direction.

"The latest developments see the Environment Bill, which is the flagship Brexit Bill proposed by the Government in 2020 is due to return to the House of Commons for its third reading having safely passed through the Bill Passage Committee. This Bill brings forward targets on air, water, biodiversity net gain, waste as well as corporate governance and the creation of the Office of Environmental Protection. This office will oversee decisions made by the Government and public bodies to keep overall scrutiny of such actions, which until 31st December 2020 is a duty of the European Court of Justice.

"Furthermore, the Agriculture Act 2020, changes the way in which farmers and landowners are paid their subsidies. This establishes the Environmental Land Management scheme which will pay out for public goods produced to encourage a healthy and efficient agricultural sector. This brings the 25 year Environment Plan to the heart of this scheme.

"2021 is setting up to be another monumental year!"