Consultations launched on major proposals for Wales’ environmental policy

The Welsh government is seeking opinions on two major new proposals for the future of Wales’ environmental policy.

Following the announcement of Welsh Environment Minister John Griffiths in November last year proposing the development of a single body to replace the Countryside Council for Wales, the Environment Agency Wales, and the Forestry Commission for Wales, a consultation was launched earlier this month. The intention in creating a single body is to ensure more effective and sustainable management of Wales’ natural resources whilst minimising costs. The consultation will focus on issues including the legal change needed to establish a new body and definition of its overall purpose. Interested parties have the opportunity to submit their reactions to the proposal until May 2nd.

Simultaneously, a consultation is underway into a recently published Green Paper entitled ‘Sustaining a Living Wales’. The paper is a follow up to the government’s strategy ‘A Living Wales’ developed in 2010 and proposes a change in the governance and delivery of environmental management and regulation to an ecosystem-based approach. The consultation, launched at the end of January this year, is designed to assess the degree of support for such a radical change and whether the tools the government proposes are seen to be the right ones.