Protecting and boosting nature
With a project of this complexity, changes to the natural environment need to be made. We are ensuring that a thriving environment will be established for people and wildlife, to last the rest of this century and beyond. We are planting far more high-quality trees and shrubs than we must remove, including a significant number of native species which could last for centuries to come.
Coastal wetland habitat is one of the most valuable natural habitats for the UK, as it is under threat from rising sea levels because of climate change. The Severn Estuary’s protected status means that new habitat will need to be created to replace habitat affected by new development within the Enterprise Area.
We will create a minimum of 80 hectares of new wetland habitat as locations for wildlife to thrive; providing “high-tide roosts” for birds. These new wetland habitats at Northwick and Hallen Marsh will help protect the internationally important bird species that live on the Severn Estuary. The new wetland will replace and expand any that is lost or disturbed by development in the Avonmouth Severnside Enterprise Area.
Creating these types of environments takes time; some areas will become ‘green’ more quickly than others. For example, the wetland habitats are likely to visibly establish quite quickly, although some of the biodiversity will take longer, but trees and some drier grass areas will take longer to fully establish. We will monitor and maintain all the areas during our works and for two years after construction is complete.