Government fails to make the economic case for HS2: states House of Lords committee

"We do not believe that the Government has shown that HS2 is the best way of stimulating growth in the country." This is one of the conclusions in the House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee report published today.

The report sets out in detail many concerns with the HS2 project, including the Government's failure to examine alternative improvements to the UK's railway infrastructure.

The Berks, Bucks & Oxon Wildlife Trust remains committed to achieving net gain for the environment, not HS2 Ltd's intended 'no net loss' approach, if the project goes ahead.

Matt Jackson, head of conservation strategy and policy at the Trust, presented The Wildlife Trusts' petition to the House of Commons select committee on 16 March, calling for the HS2 project to follow the Government's policy in relation to Biodiversity, as set out in the 2011 Natural Environment White Paper, for the natural environment to be improved by construction projects.

Petitions about impacts of HS2 on BBOWT nature reserves

The Berks, Bucks & Oxon Wildlife Trust expects to appear before the House of Commons select committee later this year to petition about the impacts on wildlife habitats and species at Finemere Wood and Calvert Jubilee nature reserves, which will be directly impacted by HS2.

HS2 Ltd continues to make changes to the proposed route and these can lead to additional issues. HS2 Ltd has added an additional 4ha of Calvert Jubilee nature reserve to their proposals. This extra area is for underground works, which, if no problems arise, should not impact on the nature reserve.

Berks, Bucks & Oxon Wildlife Trust has lodged a further petition about these changes, in order to ensure there are mechanisms in place to protect the interests of wildlife if there are difficulties with the works.

Read more

Matt Jackson's petition to HS2 select committee on 16 March

The conclusions and recommendations of the House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee report on HS2.

The Wildlife Trusts' report: HS2: a vision for large-scale nature restoration along the Proposed Route published in April 2014.

The impacts of HS2 on wildlife and habitats in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire, specifically on the Wildlife Trust's nature reserves, and what we are doing.