Biodiversity Action Plan
“Biodiversity is the variety of life on earth; the plants and animals and the habitats in which they live. It ranges in scale from microscopic bacteria to huge whales. Biodiversity is not just the rare or exotic but also the everyday and commonplace; it is the birds in our garden as well as the tigers in the rainforest.”
In 1992 the leaders from over 150 countries met in Rio de Janeiro. They met to discuss growing environmental concerns arising from the recognition that our lifestyles are destroying the natural processes on which we depend, such as the air we breathe, the water we drink and the food we eat. Several important resolutions arose from this Summit meeting; the main theme emerging was the need for sustainable development with protection of the environment as an integral part.
The convention on Biological Diversity, signed by 153 countries at Rio, is seen as a major step in achieving sustainability and emphasises that conservation of biodiversity needs to be at the heart of the policies which drive our economy.
The Government published a report Biodiversity, the UK Action Plan in 1994 which set out 59 steps to be taken to secure biodiversity in the UK, including the setting up of a Steering Group to write a national action plan. Biodiversity, the UK Steering Group’s Report: Meeting the Rio Challenge was published in December 1995 and was endorsed by the Government in May 1996. That report, with its targets and actions, forms the basis for the Biodiversity Action Plan (BAP) for Calderdale.
In 2001 the first draft of Calderdale’s Natural Heritage was produced. This version represents a revision and includes action plans for 5 Priority Habitats and 3 Priority Species.
Calderdale’s Biodiversity Action Plan is currently under review; however the findings of the 2003 – 2010 plan are still applicable.