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LE 05 Long term impact on biodiversity

(all buildings)

Number of credits availableMinimum standards


To minimise the long term impact of the development on the site and the surrounding area's biodiversity.

Assessment criteria

The following is required to demonstrate compliance:

Up to two credits

1 Where a SQESuitably qualified ecologist is appointed prior to commencement of activities on site and they confirm that all relevant EUEurope, local and national regulations or legislation requirements relating to the protection and enhancement of ecology have been complied with during the design and construction process.
2 Where a landscape and habitat management plan, appropriate to the site (including impacts of the building both during construction and in operation), is produced covering at least the first five years after project completion. This is to be handed over to the building owner or occupants and includes:
2.aManagement of any protected features on site
2.bManagement of any new, existing or enhanced habitats
2.cA reference to any current or future legislation requirements (local, national or regional) that apply to the site regarding the protection of species and habitats (and where applicable refer to biodiversity action strategies or action plans)
2.dConfirmation from the SQE that all relevant aspects of ecology are included within the plan.
3 Where additional measures to improve the assessed site's long term biodiversity are adopted, according to Table 53.

Where criteria 1 to 3 are met credits can be awarded as follows:

No. of creditsNo. of additional measures

Where the SQE confirms that some of the additional measures listed in Table 53 are not applicable to the assessed development, the credits can be awarded as follows:

Applicable additional measures
CreditsNumber of additional measures to assess

Checklists and tables

Table 53 Additional measures for the improvement of long term biodiversity

RefAdditional measure for the improvement of long term biodiversity
1The principal contractor nominates a biodiversity champion with the authority to influence site activities and ensure that detrimental impacts on site biodiversity are minimised in line with the recommendations of a SQE.
2The principal contractor trains the site workforce on how to protect site ecology during the project. Specific training must be carried out for the entire site workforce to ensure they are aware of how to avoid damaging site ecology during operations on site. Training should be based on the findings and recommendations for protection of ecological features highlighted within a report prepared by a SQE.
3The principal contractor records actions taken to protect biodiversity and monitor their effectiveness throughout key stages of the construction process. The requirement commits the principal contractor to make such records available where publicly requested.
4Where a new ecologically valuable habitat appropriate to the local area is created. This includes a habitat that supports nationally, regionally or locally important biodiversity, or which is nationally, regionally or locally important itself. Local biodiversity expertise should be sought before the end of the Concept Design stage to help identify species of local biodiversity importance on site and ensure that the proposals support local priorities.
5Where flora and fauna habitats exist on site, the contractor programmes site works to minimise disturbance to wildlife. For example, site preparation, ground works, and soft landscape works have been, or will be, scheduled at an appropriate time of year to minimise disturbance to wildlife. Timing of works may have a significant impact on, for example, breeding birds, flowering plants, seed germination, amphibians etc. Actions such as phased clearance of vegetation may help to mitigate ecological impacts. This additional requirement will be achieved where a clear plan has been produced detailing how activities will be timed to avoid any impact on site biodiversity in line with the recommendations of a SQE.

Education buildings (preschools, schools and colleges only)

A partnership has been set up by the design team with a local group that has wildlife expertise and the group has:

  1. Provided advice early in the design process regarding protecting and providing habitats for species of local importance on the site
  2. Provided advice to ensure the design is in keeping with the local environment. In particular this should draw on their local knowledge of any features or species of ecological interest on or near the site
  3. Provided, or will continue to provide, ongoing support and advice to the educational establishment to help them manage, maintain and develop the outdoor space in the longer term.

Compliance notes




Shell and core (non-residential and residential institutions only)


Applicable assessment criteria

Both options: All criteria relevant to the building type and function apply.

Refer to Appendix D – Shell and core project assessments for a more detailed description of the shell and core assessment options.

Residential - Partially fitted and fully fitted


Applicable assessment criteria - Single and multiple dwellings

Both options: All criteria relevant to the building type and function apply.

Refer to Appendix E – Applicability of BREEAM New Construction to single and multiple dwellings, partially and fully fitted for a more detailed description of residential assessment options.



Where additional measures are not applicable.

See criterion 3 .

In all cases it is necessary to employ a SQE to achieve credits for this BREEAM issue. As a minimum the SQE must provide the following in writing:

  1. Confirmation that criteria 1 and 2 have been achieved
  2. Clarification of how many of the additional measures for criterion 3 are applicable and have been achieved
  3. Guidance on how to achieve additional measure 4 (where possible).

Where the SQE confirms that none of the additional measures are applicable (due to the nature of the site and its surroundings) full credits can be awarded for demonstrating compliance with criteria 1 and 2 .

Building specific


Education (preschool and school buildings only). Additional measure 6: Ongoing support and advice

This could take the form of meetings several times a year with a staff or pupils or students working party to help them plan conservation and ecological enhancement work, or activities relating to the ecology in or near the school or college grounds.




CriteriaInterim design stageFinal post-construction stage

Ecologist’s report highlighting information required in Guidance Note 13 or a copy of Guidance Note 13 completed by the ecologist


A copy of the site's landscape and habitat management plan


The relevant section or clauses of the building specification or contract confirming its development and scope


A letter from the client confirming a commitment to produce the management plan and its scope.

A letter from the SQE confirming that all relevant legislation relating to protection and enhancement of ecology has been complied with.

A copy of the site’s landscape and habitat management plan.

Additional measures
1The relevant section or clauses of the building specification or contract or an appointment letter from the contractor. Assessor inspection of, or a copy of the relevant sections of the site log book confirming the details of any action or events taken by the biodiversity champion. If no actions were required or taken, this should be confirmed in the log book.

Training schedule or letter of confirmation from the principal contractor committing to provide relevant training


A copy of the specification clause requiring the training of the site’s workforce by the principal contractor.

A record of training undertaken including the necessary details.

A letter from the principal contractor confirming monitoring and reporting criteria for the development


A copy of the specification clause requiring the principal contractor to undertake monitoring and reporting.

BREEAM Assessor’s (or SQE’s) site inspection report and photographic evidence confirming the existence of the proposed habitat.
4A copy of the proposed site plan highlighting the new ecologically valuable habitat and the SQE’s report or letter confirming that the habitat supports the relevant biodiversity action plans.BREEAM Assessor’s (or SQE’s) site inspection report and photographic evidence confirming the existence of the proposed habitat.

The SQE’s report or letter confirming actions required with respect to programming site works to minimise disturbance. The principal contractor’s programme of works


The relevant section or clauses of the building specification or contract confirming that the programme of site works will minimise disturbance to wildlife in accordance with the SQE’s recommendations.

A letter from the SQE, or a copy of their report confirming site works were executed in a manner that minimised disturbance to wildlife in accordance with their recommendations.

Documentary evidence from the design team or wildlife group confirming:

  1. Scope of the partnership
  2. Details and remit of the wildlife group
  3. A description of the process for ongoing support that the group commit to give to the partnership
  4. Details of the meetings and actions to date.
Documentary evidence from the design team or wildlife group detailing, as a minimum, meetings, actions, advice given, framework for future support including a timetable for meetings and events.

Additional information

Relevant definitions

Biodiversity is defined as the variety of life on earth. It includes all species, animal, plants, fungi, algae, bacteria and the habitats that they depend upon.
Biodiversity action plan
A plan which sets specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time bound conservation targets for species and habitats.
Biodiversity champion
An individual formally tasked by the principal contractor with the responsibility for monitoring and influencing site activities and minimising detrimental impacts on biodiversity. The individual must have sufficient authority and knowledge of ecology and construction, and also spend sufficient time on site in order to carry out the role. The biodiversity champion need not be an ecologist or ecological expert. This may be the same person as the sustainability champion in Man 03 Responsible construction practices.
Local group with wildlife expertise
A local group with wildlife expertise could be the local Wildlife Trust or an alternative group that has been involved in local wildlife conservation or enhancement projects.
Suitably Qualified Ecologist (SQE)
Refer to LE 02 Ecological value of site and protection of ecological features

Other information

Guidance on relating ecology reports to BREEAM is provided in Guidance Note 13 available on the BREEAM website.

The following are examples of what to include in long term management plans for habitats, species and biodiversity features:

  1. Description and evaluation of features to be managed
  2. Ecological trends and constraints on site that could influence management
  3. Aims and objectives of management
  4. Appropriate management options for achieving aims and objectives
  5. Prescriptions for management actions
  6. Preparation of a work schedule (including an annual work plan capable of being rolled forward over a five year period)
  7. Body or organisation personnel responsible for implementation of the plan
  8. Monitoring and remedial measures
  9. Funding resources and mechanisms to ensure sustainable long term delivery of the proposed management.

The level of detail required for any given site should be that which is necessary to ensure the effective management of the biodiversity features present.

BREEAM International New Construction 2016
Reference: SD233 – Issue: 2.0
Date: 03/07/2017
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