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Wildlife bodies launch major attack on brownfield policy

The attack on brownfield policy launched by insect charity Buglife has been joined by a range of wildlife organisations in their major State of Nature report. 

The report was prepared by 25 wildlife organisations led by the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds and found that 60% of species studied have declined over recent years. 

But although it admits urban sprawl puts pressure on wildlife, it launches a strong attack on brownfield policy. 

"An obvious pressure on urban wildlife is the need to house an expanding human population. Following the Second World War there was a trend towards suburbanisation, with sprawling cities and new towns," it says, but even so goes on: "In the 1980s [sic], attention focussed on developing brownfield sites and open spaces within urban areas, squeezing our urban wildlife even further." 

With this in mind, it spends a whole page attacking brownfield policies. It says derelict land often provides a "refuge" for wildlife and that 15% of nationally rare invertebrates, 50% of rare bees and wasps and 35% of rare carabid beetles are found on brownfield sites.

 It does not note how many of these species are found on greenfield sites, though the figure is probably 100%. 

It claims brownfield sites can match ancient woodlands for species numbers and, because they have nutrient-poor soil, allows rare plants and reptiles to flourish.

For the full article use the link below...

Brownfield Briefing