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Green Transport Corridor

WildflowersWildflowers - Credit Trevor Dines

Yorkshire Wildlife Trust is running a pilot project in south and east Yorkshire to maximise the wildlife found along England's transport corridors.

What are we doing?

Yorkshire Wildlife Trust is working with Network Rail and Highways England, as well as local landowners, to create green transport corridors that thrive with wildlife and improve the resilience of the network to ensure it is safe, performs well and can adapt to climate change.

This is a pilot project building on opportunity mapping carried out by ADAS in consultation with the partner organisations to the Humberhead Levels Nature Improvement Area. This mapping work identified trial sites that are now being surveyed to provide a starting point, develop detailed management plans and to allow comparisons to be made once new plans are underway.

The new management plans could include methods of grassland, wetland and woodland management or creation.

Once these changes have been made, we will be monitoring the sites through the life of the project so that we can document any changes to wildlife and resilience of the corridors. The findings from the pilot will inform future decisions regarding the management of our country's transport infrastructure.

What do we want to achieve?

We want to achieve the following aims:

  • To increase the resilience of the transport network
  • Reduce the impact of our roads and rail on the landscape to include the visual impact, run off of pollutants and movement of birds, insects and mammals
  • Increase the wildlife-richness, or biodiversity, of the transport corridors
  • Increase the connectivity of wildlife habitat, so that wildlife can move through and adapt to climate change.

Why are we focussing on transport corridors?

Following the release of the Natural Environmental White Paper in 2011, the Government made a commitment to maximise the contribution of transport's soft estate to England's ecological network. In plain terms, it vowed to 'green up' transport corridors and make them better for wildlife.

One of the key findings of White Paper is that spaces for wildlife needed to be more connected, to allow species to move through and not get isolated in small patches, which can drive local extinctions.

Transport corridors are an obvious way of connecting up wildlife habitat - they already link up areas and cover the whole of England.

Why here?

The Green Transport Corridors project will be running in the existing Humberhead Levels Nature Improvement Area (NIA), which was designated following on from the initial recommendations from the White Paper. Here partners have worked together to deliver environmental change on a large scale and continue to do so. Building on existing work and a history of partnership working should give the pilot the best chance of success.

A pilot project is also being run by Cumbria Wildlife Trust in the Morcambe Bay NIA, which will provide additional information to inform best practice going forward.

For more information...

If you want to find out more about this project or about volunteering contact us by calling 01302 853941 or emailing info@ywt.org.uk.

Thank you to our funders and partners

Natural England logoNetwork Rail logoHighways England logo