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How is a Habitat Bank established and maintained under the German Impact Mitigation Regulation? The example of the Burgberg Zschaitz Habitat Bank in Saxony.

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Outline

Howis a Habitat Bank establishedandmaintainedunderthe German Impact Mitigation Regulation?The exampleoftheBurgbergZschaitz Habitat Bank in Saxony

Webinar in the scope of the first global conference on approaches to avoid, minimise, restore, and offset biodiversity loss: “TO NO NET LOSS OF BIODIVERSITY AND BEYOND”, 3-4 June, 2014, Zoological Society of London, Regent’s Park

Marianne Darbi, Prof. Wolfgang Wende (IOER)

Jörg Voß (Sächsische Ökoflächen-Agentur)


Outline

Outline

  • Basic principles of the German Impact Mitigation Regulation

  • Legal and policy framework in the state of Saxony

  • “SächsischeÖkoflächen-Agentur” - compensation services provider in the state of Saxony

  • “BurgbergZschaitz” – remains of a prehistoric and early medieval hill fort

  • Selecting the site and securing the land

  • Assessing the environmental baseline

  • Setting the goals

  • Installing and approving the habitat bank

  • Implementing the measures

  • Securing the measures: maintenance and monitoring

  • Running the habitat bank and selling the credits

  • Lessons learned: key factors to success


1 basic principles of the german imr

1. Basic principlesofthe German IMR

Impact Mitigation Regulation (“Eingriffsregelung”) is the major landscape conservation instrument to address mitigation and compensation for impacts from developments and projects in Germany:

entered into force as part of the Federal Nature Conservation Act 1976

comprehensive approach (for all impacts, on all scales, not restricted to specific areas)


1 basic principles of the german imr1

1. Basic principlesofthe German IMR

2002 and 2009 amendments to the Federal Nature Conservation Act: loosening of spatial and functional connection between impact and compensation

compensation pools: provision and bundling of compensation sites and measures


2 legal and policy framework in the state of saxony

2. Legal and policy framework in the state of Saxony

Saxon Law on Nature Conservation and Landscape Management SächsNatSchG, 2013

Art. 10 para. 2: Regulation of exemption from liabilities (“Freistellungsregelung”)

Available at: http://www.revosax.sachsen.de/Details.do?sid=5111430356025

Regulation of the Saxon State Ministry for Environment and Regional Development on the balancing of interventions in nature and landscape (Naturschutz-Ausgleichsverordnung) NatSchAVO,

Available at: http://www.revosax.sachsen.de/Details.do?sid=371123303329

Regulation of the Saxon State Ministry for Environment and Agriculture on the eco-account and the compensation land register (Sächsische Ökokonto-Verordnung)SächsÖKoVO, 2008

Available at: http://www.revosax.sachsen.de/Details.do?sid=2301212391829


2 legal and policy framework in the state of saxony1

2. Legal and policy framework in the state of Saxony

Recommendation for the assessment and balancing of interventions in Saxony

Technical principles, guidance and tools, case example illustrating the work steps, balancing forms

Biotope value based procedure

Available at: http://www.umwelt.sachsen.de/ umwelt/natur/8516.htm

Compensation land register

are implemented and managed by the Lower Nature Conservation authorities of counties

New web portal online: KoKa-Nat(Compensationlandregisterfor Nature Conservation)

Available at: http://list-sachsen.de/b6/KoKa.htm


3 s chsische kofl chen agentur compensation services provider in the state of saxony

3. “SächsischeÖkoflächen-Agentur” - compensation services provider in the state of Saxony

The Saxon rural settlement GmbH (SächsischeLandsiedlung SLS) was commissioned in 2008 by the Saxon State Ministry for Environment and Agriculturein a public tender as compensation services provider for the state of Saxony

SLS is the non-profit settlement organization in Saxony

Member of the Federation of compensation agencies in Germany BFAD and is committed to its quality standards

Tasks

Implementation of measures for the creation and improvement of terrestrial and aquatic habitats

Production-integrated compensation

Renaturation of sealed surfaces


3 s chsische kofl chen agentur compensation services provider in the state of saxony1

3. “SächsischeÖkoflächen-Agentur” - compensation services provider in the state of Saxony

  • Range of services:

  • Building a habitat bank of compensation measures, implemented in advance

  • Procurementofownorthirdpartycompensationmeasures (orcredits) todeveloperstofulfiltheircompensationrequirements

  • Support for developers with individual steps of the creation, procurement and safeguarding of their own compensation measures, e.g.

  • Selectionofmeasures

  • Planning: Description and definition of goals

  • Coordinationwithautorities

  • Planningofmeasures

  • Evaluation accordingtoguidance

  • Implementation ofmeasures

  • Application for entry in the eco-account

  • Safeguardingofmaintenance

  • Follow-upandmonitoring


4 burgberg zschaitz remains of a prehistoric and early medieval hill fort

4. “BurgbergZschaitz” – remains of a prehistoric and early medieval hill fort

Location of the site: 72.000 sqmon a particularly prominent mountain spur in a very fertile agricultural landscape (open landscape with few structural elements), geographical scope of the site builds on both the archaeological and natural structures


4 burgberg zschaitz remains of a prehistoric and early medieval hill fort1

4. “BurgbergZschaitz” – remains of a prehistoric and early medieval hill fort

Once monumental Slavic castle

Already inhabited in prehistoric times (~4200 BC). : Establishment of a fort on the plateau, exposed location and natural protection by steep slopes, only accessible from the east (transition to the plateau), several artificial mounds offered protection here

Later, the castle was abandoned and the protection systems disappeared on the surface

For centuries covered with forest

~1800 deforestation and conversion to arable land

Since 1950s loss of 0,6m soil through farming and erosion

2009/10 extensive excavations of the State Office for Archaeology (LfA): BurgbergZschaitz is one of few hill-top settlements in good condition in Saxony (archaeological site)  must be protected


5 selecting the site and securing the land

5. Selecting the site and securing the land

Proposal of the State Association for the Conservation of the Cultural Heritage in Saxony (LVSH) and State Office of Archaeology (LfA): protection of significant archaeological structures at the same time enhancing the nature conservation value of the area as habitat bank

Joint development of a concept with LVSH and LfA

2010 initial discussions for the implementation of the measure with LVSH and the competent farmland consolidation authority of the district Central Saxony

In early 2011 land consolidation authority invited to a meeting of the land owners


5 selecting the site and securing the land1

5. Selecting the site and securing the land

Acquisition of land through land consolidation according to the Land Consolidation Act FlurbG

Cooperation of the owners: a total of 17 agricultural land waiver declarations according to Art. 52 FlurbG (5,3 ha), another 3 land parcels (2,6 ha) through a voluntary agricultural exchange according to Art. 103a FlurbG

Through the possibilities of the FlurbG

the land could be acquired quickly and

easily. No costs occur for the notary,

land registry or survey of land for the

parties.


6 assessing the environmental baseline

6. Assessing the environmental baseline

Intensive farming

Existing field path without accompanying greenery

Existing Forest without graded edge


7 setting the goals

7. Setting the goals

Goals

Networking of the Natura 2000 site "dolomite area Ostrava and Jahnatal" with the surrounding landscape and neighboring specially protected biotopes through corridors of new grassland, wood and dry habitats

Extensification of previously intensively used land and enhancing the landscape structure and scenery through a small-scale mosaic of landscape elements

Creation of breeding and feeding habitats for species of semi-open agricultural landscapes, as well as thermo-and helio-philic species (reptiles, insects such as mason bees, numerous beetles and butterflies)

Creation of robust forest edges to buffer the existing forests against influences (wind, soil and pollutants) and to improve and link the structural and species diversity

Creation of new transitional habitats (ecotones) with special habitat and development function

Protectionfrom wind erosion

Protectionofarchaeologicalmonuments


7 setting the goals1

7. Setting the goals

Measures

Conversionto extensive permanent grassland

Creating a graded edge of the forest

Planting a fruittreerow

Creating a stone ridge and nutricient-poor grassland


8 installing and approving the habitat bank

8. Installing and approving the habitat bank

Evaluating the nature conservation value of the initial and target state with the “Recommen-dationfor the assessment and balancing of interventions in Saxony” includes two aspects:

1. Calculation of the Biotope value gained through the measures (in credit points) on the basis of biotope types

Biotope type credits/m2 area in m2 biotopevalue in credits

Before

After


8 installing and approving the habitat bank1

8. Installing and approving the habitat bank

Evaluating the nature conservation value of the initial and target state with the “Recommen-dationfor the assessment and balancing of interventions in Saxony” includes two aspects:

2. Calculation of the functional enhancement (in credit points) for individual natural functions


8 installing and approving the habitat bank2

8. Installing and approving the habitat bank

Total enhancement in credit points is the sum of biotope value gained and functional enhancement

SächsischeÖkoflächen-Agentur sends request to the competent Nature Conservation Authority to approve the compensations measures (presentation of the objectives, planning and implementation of measures, calculation of credits)

Nature Conservation Authority checks the request, approves the compensation measures and specifies further detailed regulations


9 implementing the measures

9. Implementing the measures

On the previously intensively used arable land extensive permanent grassland was created using an endemic, herb-rich seed mixture. Through different seed compositions flower strips are created that highlight the archaeological structures of the early medieval fortification.


9 implementing the measures1

9. Implementing the measures

With targeted planting of site-specific indigenous trees a five-stage edge of the forest was created, including a herb-rich seam as a transition between the adjacent existing forest and the open land. The structural diversity offers a new habitat for numerous species.


9 implementing the measures2

9. Implementing the measures

The planting of fruit trees rows (using regional and historic varieties) between the forest edge and an existing field hedge and along field paths enhances habitat diversity and the preservation of cultural diversity. Furthermore it has structures the landscape and has aesthetic significance.


9 implementing the measures3

9. Implementing the measures

The landscape scenery is enhanced by building a stone ridge, which highlights the design, size and location of the former fortifications. In addition to its cultural and historical significance this thermophilic site has a high habitat potential for rare animal and plant species.


9 implementing the measures4

9. Implementing the measures


10 securing the measures maintenance and monitoring

10. Securing the measures: maintenance and monitoring

Maintenance

5-year Land Use Contract with the regional farming association (SächsischeÖkoflächen-Agentur ensures maintenance of the measures for at least 25 years, renewing or adjusting the land use contract accordingly over time)

financial reparations for extra costs, loss of earnings and agricultural funding

Cultivation ofextensive permanent grassland to forage for dairy cows

Extensive fresh meadow with mowing 2x a year (06/07 and 08/09) with haymaking

No use of pesticides and fertilizers

Monitoring

Starts in 2014 after the development care, based on a concept (agreed with the competent Nature Conservation Authority)

including floristic and faunistic surveys with annual reports

Goal: evidence of target biotope types with their typical species composition


11 running the habitat bank and selling the credits

11. Running the habitat bank and selling the credits

Compensation within the Natural Landscape Units: ~ 30 in Saxony

Established measures can be fully or partly assigned as compensation to one or more development projects

Intervention and compensation have to be in a functional relationship and lie in the same natural landscape unit

For large projects (interventions with zoning / planning approval) extension of the search area to the planning region or river basin


11 running the habitat bank and selling the credits1

11. Running the habitat bank and selling the credits

Compensation for the construction of two wind turbines in the same natural landscape unit

Assignment of points or a partial area of the habitat bank by the competent Nature Conservation Authority


11 running the habitat bank and selling the credits2

11. Running the habitat bank and selling the credits

Calculating a price for the single credit – full costing (“Vollkostenkalkulation”) includes:

Project development

Estate (purchase price, surveys, certificates)

Implementation of measures (from environmental baseline to development care)

Project management

Project assignment

Maintenance administration (e.g. monitoring)

Maintenance of measures

Costing is a process that builds on balancing target values and actual values

Cost estimate at the beginning

quarterly compared with actual used resources

Inclusion of parameters such as securities, risk and bridge financing (decreasing or increasing depending on the status of the project)

After each partial sale of credits the balance will be adjusted

 Price for the single credit adjusts over time to the actual costs


12 lessons learned key factors to success

12. Lessons learned: key factors to success

  • Clear legal regulation and policy guidance

  • Strong cooperation and agreement of compensation services providers on quality standards and procedures (e.g. Federal Association of Compensation Agencies)

  • Regional cooperation with stakeholders

  • Strong cooperation with land owners and farmers: production-integrated compensation reduces consumption of farming land for compensation (combining environmentally sound cultivation with financial reparations for extra costs, loss of earnings and agricultural funding)

  • Active land management (land purchase, land change, land consolidation) to secure land with a high nature conservation value or potential

  • Land consolidation enables quick and easy land acquisition without costs for the notary, land registry or survey of land


12 lessons learned key factors to success1

12. Lessons learned: key factors to success

  • Implementation of larger, complex and high quality measures add to reaching state-wide nature conservation goals and strengthen biotope networks and connectivity

  • Larger measures (10.000-20.000 sqm) are more cost-efficient to plan and implement and deliver a higher nature conservation value than several small projects

  • Public acceptance through clear nature conservation goals including socioecological aspects e.g. environmental education, aesthetic and recreational values

  • Stable, independent and not profit-oriented compensation services provider enables the maintenance and safeguarding of the measures in perpetuity


12 lessons learned key factors to success2

12. Lessons learned: key factors to success

  • Obstacles on theway

  • advance financing as limiting factor

  • uncertainty (refinancing of sites and measures cannot be guaranteed)

  • need for trained personnel

  • Competition, lacking coordination and price dumping can have a negative effect on the quality of the measures

  • lacking transparency and transferability (valuation techniques to balance impact and compensation and cost calculation differ very much)

  • interaction with the Common Agricultural Policy of the EU (subsidies)

  • Unclear and uncertain administrative action and sometimes lacking engagement of municipalities


12 lessons learned key factors to success3

12. Lessons learned: key factors to success

The cooperationandengagementof all stakeholdershavemade

the „BurgbergZschaitz“ habitatbank a greatsuccess!


Contact

Contact

Leibniz Institute ofEcological Urban and Regional development (IOER)

Marianne Darbi

Fon: 0351 4679 223

Fax :0351 4679 212

E-Mail: [email protected]

Sächsische Ökoflächen-Agentur

Jörg Voss

Fon: 03521 4690 29

E-Mail: [email protected]


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