Wales Biodiversity Partnership

NERC Biodiversity Duty

Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act 2006 (NERC)

The Biodiversity Duty as set out in the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act came into force on 1st Oct 2006.

Section 40(1) of the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act 2006 ("the NERC Act") places a duty on every public authority, in exercising its functions, to “have regard, so far as is consistent with the proper exercise of those functions, to the purpose of conserving biodiversity”. The Duty affects all public authorities. Local authorities are a key target group, but the Duty also affects a wide range of public bodies including fire, and police, health and transport authorities etc.

Section 42 of the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act (2006) required the National Assembly for Wales in consultation with The Countryside Council for Wales (now along with Forestery Commison Wales and Envronmnet Agency Wales part of the single environmnet body Natural Resources Wales) to publish, review, revise and act on lists of organisms of principal importance in Wales. This list is known as the Section 42 (S42) list of species and habitats of principal importance in Wales

Biodiversity Checklists

WBP have produced biodiversity checklists for local authority and public authority staff in Wales. The checklists will assist public and local authorities to take account of biodiversity in their operational activities and will help organisations to remain legal under the NERC Act (2006) Biodiversity Duty, Habitats Regulations and other biodiversity related legislation. In addition, the implementation of the checklists and guidance will help build towards the biodiversity outcomes contained in the Environment Strategy for Wales.