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Woodland design: creation, felling and replanting
|3.5Conversion to non-forested land|
Conversion to non-forested land shall take place only in certain limited circumstances as set out in this requirement.
The new land use shall be more valuable than any type of practicably achievable woodland cover in terms of its biodiversity, landscape or historic environment benefits, and conditions a, b, c and d shall be met:
Means of verification
Conversion to non-forested land should be planned and implemented in accordance with the UKFS Guidelines on biodiversity, landscape and historic environment.
A transition plan should set out as a minimum the justification for conversion and a strategy for implementation, subsequent management and monitoring.
Under current regulations an environmental impact assessment may be required before such conversions are implemented.
Planning consent or an approved Environmental Statement can provide sufficient evidence that there is no unresolved substantial dispute.
Deforestation to facilitate infrastructure or built development which is not integral to the management of the rest of the woodland cannot meet this requirement.
See also section 6.1.3 in relation to restoration of small scale habitats within a woodland matrix.
Advice to owners/managers
Only timber felled in accordance with this requirement can be certified.
Owners/managers are advised to seek guidance from their certification body or group scheme manager.