Renewables developer Anesco has collaborated with conservation charity the RSPB on a new project which will see it overhaul its biodiversity plans.
The partnership will involve the RSPB visiting Anesco’s solar farms to inspect and advise on how biodiversity plans could be improved to benefit so-called ‘priority species’, which comprise wildlife groups under serious threat.
Anesco then intends to use the recommendations to shape its biodiversity management plans for future developments.
The collaboration has been launched on the back of research conducted by the RSPB over three years which found that 60% of native UK species had declines over the last 50 years.
Darren Moorcroft, head of species and habitats conservation at the RSPB, said that solar farm biodiversity plans had the potential to “greatly benefit UK wildlife”.
“It is an excellent opportunity to develop habitats for nature in need of our help, showcasing how a renewable energy business and wildlife conservation can be delivered in unison; whilst providing clean energy and sustainable development we can still continue to give nature a home,” he added.
Adrian Pike, chief executive at Anesco, meanwhile claimed the project to be a first of its kind for the industry.
“Thanks to this partnership, we will not only be continuing to create habitats at our sites in accordance with planning rules, but will be going far beyond this. We will be maximising the positive impact that our sites have for local wildlife, while focusing on supporting those species that really need it,” Pike said.
Many solar farms across the UK have incorporated extensive biodiversity plans in order to clear planning, including the now widespread adoption of beehives and other habitats.