Natural England continue to roll out a programme of introduced charges for protected species mitigation licences. Charges for the following mitigation licences are now in place:
> Badger: A24 Interfere with a badger sett for development; CL35 badger class licence: site notification (only available to registered consultants)
> Wild plants: A31 Take wild plants
> European Protected Species (other): A12 EPS mitigation licence
> Natterjack toad: A44 Natterjack toad mitigation
> Otter: A45 Otter mitigation
> Smooth snake and sand lizard: A46 Smooth snake and sand lizard mitigation
> Water vole: CL31 Intentional disturbance and damage destruction of water vole burrows for development
Charges for mitigation licences vary depending on the licence type applied for, and sometimes depending on the scope and complexity of the project to be assessed. Applicants are required to complete a ‘charge screening form’ along with their application, which can be used to request a best estimate of the final cost of the licence, prior to the licence application being processed.
For ‘A12’ EPS licences, a standard charge of £690 / application is applied for less complex projects that satisfy certain criteria on the charge form. For projects of a larger scale, EPS licence charges are calculated on a case-by-case basis, charged at a rate of £101 an hour for NE staff time, with an additional £183 charge per application which will go towards the cost of compliance.
Alternatively, for ‘A24’ badger licences for example, there is no standard charge option and the £101 / hour rate is in addition to a £61 compliance charge. Most badger licence charges are estimated to cost between £300-£800.
Normal licence processing times should still apply (usually c.30 days to complete, but currently subject to delays in some cases). Once the application has been issued the charge will be finalised and invoiced within 10 days.
CSA will be able to guide you through this process, but we hope it’s helpful to know a bit more about how the charges apply.