The Green Infrastructure Strategy was commissioned as part of the evidence base for the LDF Core Strategy. It provides a long-term vision and high-level delivery plan for Green Infrastructure in Sedgemoor.
Green Infrastructure (GI) refers to the environmental resources within and between towns and villages. It is a network of natural assets and spaces, including formal parks, gardens, historic landscapes, woodlands, green corridors, waterways, street trees and countryside. GI is part of the life-support system of an area; providing functions and environmental services to a community, such as employment, tourism, culture, recreation, physical health and mental well being, social interaction, contact with nature, drainage and flood management, climate change adaptation and pollution mitigation.
Core Strategy Policy D20 deals directly with GI, but given the breadth of the topic it is also relevant to many aspects of the "place-shaping" and "sustainable communities" components of the plan.
The study goals were to:
Define GI and provide background information on its benefits and principles;
Research relevant GI policies at the national and local level, including links to local strategies;
Map and identify existing GI to be protected and enhanced;
Review the sensitivity of the landscape and landscape character areas;
Assist the public sector agencies involved in growth and development decisions in their understanding of the relative sensitivity of areas;
Develop a long term strategy setting out how the District's GI can be enhanced and extended in the future;
Identify proposed GI investment associated with the growth and regeneration of Sedgemoor District;
Establish investment priorities and criteria for GI; and
Set out a high level delivery plan for GI, including potential elements to be delivered through planning obligations.
The Final Report (May 2011) consists of two separate volumes: "Volume 1 - Research" (110 pages) and "Volume 2 - Strategy" (74 pages)
An Annex (32 pages), which provides a composite version of some of the tables / key text from the GI Strategy, is also available. This includes Key Principles & Measures and a full list of Potential Projects which are otherwise presented under separate themes within the main Volume 2 document (Climate change / Demographics / Urbanisation / Water / Food / Energy / Waste).