Letter sent to the Times on December 4th
At present, no account is taken of the environmental loss resulting from development, so any attempt to offset is to be welcomed (Damage levy lets builders use woodland, December 3).
High nature value sites, such as woodland or flower rich meadows, should also be high monetary value ones, thus encouraging developers to look elsewhere, yet still deliver an environmental net gain.
Key to the success of this tariff approach is the valuation of biodiversity, which will present a challenge to economists and environmentalists alike.
Dr Alastair Leake
Director of policy, Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT)
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