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Conservation Law Report

Introduction

This report is to be presented to the development company for considering the legal implications of purchasing a site that can fall into conservation acts of the UK. The report is prepared concerning the legal issues while also include the details of protected species found on the site report of ecological audit of the site. A large development with intention to purchase a site on the Northeast of Kent, UK has concerned about legal implications, as the site has been used for grazing by cattle and the site might be fallen within the described areas by the Conservation Acts of UK and EU. Therefore, the ecological audit of the site has presented the report providing the evidence for the existence of some species in the site needs to be interpreted within the legal sphere (For map: see appendix). The legal concerned showed by the development company is because of its intention to pursue development plan but such development may harm those species and the development company could be charged under the Conservation Act of UK and EU. This report provides the details of any protected species found on the site (related to International, EU or UK legislation), the nature of the protection and the legal source of the protection as well as other relevant legal issues arising from the site audit. Hire the best essay writing service.

Protected Species Found on the Site

The report provided by ecological audit in the site shows that Creeping Bent and Marsh Foxtail are the spices that are present in the site and likely to be threatened by the environmental change. The UK law called Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 protects the identified species while EU habitat directives provide same level of protection (Hill, 2005). Moreover, the code of conduct is practiced under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 to implement and interpret the regulations and statues declared in the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 (Soffe, 2005). The international law also has great influence on the legislation of the UK while European Union Commission Habitat Directive is widely used throughout the UK to implement the law for wildlife plant protection (Evans, 1997). The next section of the report is prepared to present the acts, regulations and statutory those are applied to provide protection to Creeping Bent and Marsh Foxtail in the UK. The detailed information and in-depth analysis of the UK legislation will later be used to describe the implication of the laws on the purchasing of the site by the Development Company. 

The Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981

The Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 is the fundamental legal tool used for the legislative protection of wildlife in the United Kingdom (Miller, 2001). Through the act, different conventions and directives are followed including Convention on the conservation of European Wildlife and Natural Habitats, the European Union Directives on the Conservation of Wild Birds and Natural Habitats Wild Fauna and Flora (Davies, 2004). The Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 contains the list of plants that are protected against any harm, damage, disturbance in breeding, picking, uprooting and destruction without any license. Moreover, these plants are also protected from sale in the market. There is provision regarding wild plants in the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 that is applicable only on wild plants, while herbs and other beneficial plants are protected from being picked and uprooted for any purpose (Waite, 2001).

 

To provide the protection to plants, the section 13 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 has identified different measures that provide legal protection to plants (Evans, 1997). The section 13 of the Act 1981 prohibits any unauthorized intentional picking and uprooting of any plant species including the Creeping Bent and Marsh Foxtail. Schedule 5 and 8 contains the names of the plants that are protected by prohibiting the destruction. It further prevents the sale of the plants species through performing unauthorized possession for the sale of plants listed in the schedule 8 and individuals found guilty of committing the offense can be fined and imprisoned (Hill, 2005). 

However, there are certain defences provided such as accidental actions that can be ignored, as it is lawful activity (Evans, 1997). Other cases of defense are also present in the legislation in which acts can be considered as permitted however in normal cases act is taken into account as illegal act. Such cases for defense are accessible when reasonable, unpredictable, and unavoidable things occur (Dieterich& Straaten, 2004). Other possible exceptions concerning the issues include the prevention of serious damage or destruction to the plants, crops and livestock, picking or uprooting the plant for their interest such as public safety and other health concern, carrying out a scientific research or rescue operation for the wildlife such as photography with the licensed authorized from authority (Borja& Collins, 2004).  

Code of Conduct - For the Conservation and Enjoyment of Wild Plants

Under the law of United Kingdom for the protection of wildlife and habitats, code of conduct for the conservation and enjoyment of wild plants is of great significance, as numbers of plants are given protection (Hayward, 1995). Similar to Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 that declares the picking and uprooting of wild plant without permission of the authorized body as illegal act, the code of conduct is used to define the conceptual meaning termed in the legal document (Glowka et al., 1994).

The code of conduct describes the uprooting of wild plant in the meaning of‘digging up’ and‘removing’ the growing plant from root. Similarly, plant has been defined as algae, lichens and fungi, while plants mosses, liverworts and other vascular plants are also used for plant (Moore, 2001). Moreover, the code of conduct declares that under the Theft Act 1968, every wild plant is the legal property of an individual and uprooting the plants for the core purpose of commercial use without any authorization is illegal act (Given, 1994). 

Understanding the areas that are strictly protected for the wildlife and habitats in the UK legislation is significant, because areas being strictly protected for the conservation of wild plants can be of great importance related to identifying the site which development company is interested to purchase. The identification of site under the legal act or regulation can be helpful in determining the legal status of the site while this will further help in understanding the legal implications of purchasing such site on the company.

In UK, there are numbers of statutory designated for the sites with high conservation interest such as National Nature Reserves, Sites of Special Scientific Interest specifically in the areas of Britain and Areas of Special Scientific Interest in Northern Ireland (Davies, 2004). The considerable point is that even owner and occupiers can be subject to violation of the act if they are found removing, picking, uprooting or destroying the growing plants in those sites (Folsom et al., 1996). However, in rare cases, the statutory allows to remove the plants or destroy their growth after consulting with the statutory conservation agencies that are English Nature, the Countryside Council, and Environment and Heritage Service.

EC Habitats Directive (Directive 92/43/EEC on the Conservation of Natural Habitats and of Wild Fauna and Flora)

The most of the legislation and statutory regulation of the UK protecting the wildlife and habitat against intentional harm are the extraction of European Union Commission Habitat and Directives (Jack, 2009). Since there is great influence of the EC Habitat Directives on the plant protection law of EU on the UK legislation, it has become essential to consider the legislation and regulation protecting the wild plants. The considerable point about the UK legislation for the protection of the plants is that it does not provide protection to all areas and every plant, because the EU laws protect specific areas and plants (Bowman et al., 2011). However, the species identified in the purchasing site of Development Company, such as Creeping Bent and Marsh Foxtail are protected by the legislation of the UK, they are further protected by the law of European Union (Jack, 2009).

EC provides protection to rare plants and specific areas throughout the European community. The legislation document appeared to provide the protection to the wild plants is Habitat Directive also called Council Directive 92/43/EEC (Borja& Collins, 2004). The Habitat Directive has recognized total nine vascular plants grown in the UK, which needs to be protected against intentional picking, uprooting, removing, cutting and collecting, destroying and selling (Folsom et al., 1996). The EC Regulations apply to all stages in the biological cycle of the plant, which means picking, cutting, collecting and destroying of the plants in any season is prohibited. Moreover, this protection is not limited to only picking, removing, cutting and collecting but seeds and spores are protected (Davies, 2004).

Creeping Bent and Marsh Foxtail are two of the species, which are enlisted in the Habitat Directive of the European Commission, also require the protection against the intentional picking and cutting, collecting, uprooting and possession or sale (mainly aims to indicate the commercialization) under the Council of Europe’s Ben Convention (Dieterich& Straaten, 2004). Currently, the legislation practiced in the UK for the protection of the wild plants is the reflection of the EC Habitat Directive, as EU requires its member states to take the initiatives to establish the system of protection for the plant species listed in the EC Habitat Directive. The significant part of the EC legislation is that it applies very strict law even for the transportation of the specimens of such species (Sands, 2003). Moreover, artificial proliferation of plants species including Creeping Bent and Marsh Foxtail are also controlled under all conditions with the view to reduce the carrying the specimen of the wild plants (Sadeleer, 2002).

Implication of Laws on the Case

Considering the ecological audit report, submitted to highlight the wildlife species present in the site, the above discussion and evaluation was made to identify the legal implications in case the development company prefers to purchase the site. The above discussion has provided with the understanding that the development company can fall within the legal implication if it violates the laws of protection for the wildlife plants of UK and EU. However, the company can have major intention to use the land for the development purpose such as building a factory or creating unnatural environment. If the development company proceeds to purchase the land, it must be used to get return from the investment and if company develops the site, it will have to remove the wildlife plants intentionally.

 However, most probably, the company prefers to find another way by which it does not harm or damage the wildlife plants and accomplishes its core business purpose. If the company is found cutting and damaging the wildlife plants specifically Creeping Bent and Marsh Foxtail, this act of company can be subject to mainly violation of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 and Habitat Directive of the European Union Commission. However, once the company purchases the site it will be owner of the site and in general terms, it will possess the right to perform anything it wants on the site, but the Habitat Directive of the EU Commission strictly prohibits even the owner and occupier of the site or land to remove the wildlife species or prevent their growth. The Wildlife and Countryside Act of 1981, however, permits the removal after the consultation with statutory in the regions yet it does not allow commercial or intentional destruction of the plants for the development.

 If the company removes or damages the plants found in the site and protected by the legislation of UK and EU Commission, this company can be subject to penalties and other heavy fines. In the most severe cases, such as sweeping the site area or other, the owner or CEO of the company can be imprisoned to jail for the period declared by the UK law. Moreover, in the UK, the penalties for the wildlife plants are of special concern and a maximum fine of some US$ 150 is usually imposed.

Conclusion

The findings of the report can be concluded as there are two main legislations protecting the wildlife plants in the UK. The Wildlife and Countryside 1981 (amended) is the legislation of the UK drafted based on the laws described by the Habitat Directive of the EU Commission. The act is aimed at protecting the wildlife plants by prohibiting the picking, collecting, cutting, removing and damaging the Creeping Bent, and Marsh Foxtail from any intentional acts by declaring it illegal activity. Moreover, Habitat Directive of EU Commissions is also aimed at provide protection to Creeping Bent, and Marsh Foxtail listed in the schedule 5 and 8 through implementing the strict law in the specific areas of the UK.

Concerning the case given about the purchase of the natural farm site by the development company, the existence of the Creeping Bent, and Marsh Foxtail in the site indicates that after purchasing the site, the company will not be able to use the land for the development because of the existence of the wildlife species. In addition, if the company proceeds to remove those species, this act of the company will be subject to illegal or violation of the code of conduct under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 and the Habitat of the EU Commission. Thus, it can be concluded that purchasing the site area by the company cannot be appropriate for a manufacturing or construction work, as this kind of work more likely put the wildlife plants on the danger.  

 


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