EWCO: Changes to Environmental Stewardship agreements

Members should be aware of some recent amendments to Environmental Stewardship (ES) agreements in relation to the England Woodland Creation Offer (EWCO). These amendments come after the collective work of Defra, the Rural Payments Agency (RPA), Natural England and the Forestry Commission. See below an update from the Forestry Commission on these amendments.     […]

Soil Health Action Plan to be launched in England

Announced in a speech in the House of Lords by the Minister of State for the Environment, Lord Goldsmith, the Soil Health Action Plan (SHAPE) will help restore the health of England’s soils and will contribute to the government’s targets on biodiversity. The plan will be a crucial part of Defra’s efforts to halt the […]

Defra announce Tree Health pilot

Announced on 31 August, the Government’s Tree Health pilot will support action against pests and diseases in ash, sweet chestnut, larch and spruce trees in England. The findings from the three-year pilot scheme, delivered by the Forestry Commission, will help develop the future Tree Health scheme that is due to launch in 2024. Defra are […]

Government seeking views on the release of beavers into the wild

Beavers are being reintroduced in the UK after being hunted to extinction 400 years ago. A consultation launched by Defra on Wednesday 25 August is seeking views on the proposed approach to the further reintroduction and the management of the species in the wild in England. Widely referred to as ‘ecosystem engineers’, beavers can play […]

The Big Black Country i-Tree Project

The Black Country, an area within the West Midlands, has decided to focus on its green infrastructure, by taking a detailed look at the structure and composition of its urban forest. The study will provide valuable information about the trees that grow there: which species are resident, how sustainable the trees are, and what they […]

UK Research and Innovation to fund research on how trees can help reach net zero

The UK Research and Innovation public body have announced £10.5 million of funding to support research on the value of trees to people and the planet, and expanding treescapes across the UK. Six projects have been awarded funding to develop new tools and approaches for how trees and woodlands can adapt to climate change. The […]

IPCC publish report on impacts of 1.5 °C global warming

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is the United Nations body for assessing the science related to climate change, providing regular scientific assessments, implications and potential future risks, as well as putting forward adaptation and mitigation options. Published only a few months ahead of COP26 in Glasgow, the special report, Global Warming of 1.5 […]

Successful Green Recovery Challenge Fund projects announced

With £80 million available for nature conservation, recovery and nature-based solutions, the Green Recovery Challenge Fund will see the establishment of almost one million trees in England, supporting 2,500 jobs. Following on from the first round in December 2020, a further 90 projects have been successful in the second round, with grants ranging from £68,100 […]

ICF Executive Director joins National Stakeholder Group

On 28 July 2021, Shireen Chambers MBE FICFor joined a meeting with the new Scotland environment minister Mairi McAllan and a wide range of stakeholders to discuss how best to meet Scottish Government’s ambitions for forestry. It was a hugely positive and collaborative meeting and a chance for the new minister to meet senior players […]