We take our environmental responsibilities seriously and we’re working closely with Natural England and local authorities to reduce the impact of our activities as best we can across the project.
We have a team of experts working with us to make sure local habitats, plants and animals are identified and protected before and throughout our construction activity.
Across the project, we carry out extensive surveys to identify protected species such as bats, water voles, dormice, badgers and reptiles. Where we find them, we try to locate our work as far away as possible. Where we can’t avoid them, we take special steps to move them out of harm’s way or to find ways of working so that they are not disturbed by our activities.
We’ve been working in the Mendip Hills and in Portbury Wharf Nature Reserve to protect identified populations of great crested newts along the routes of our planned underground cables. We’ve installed special fencing which is designed to keep amphibians and reptiles from entering designated areas. Our licensed specialists are then able to move them further afield out of harm’s way.
In parts of the Mendips we’ve been carefully digging up native bluebell bulbs and re-planting them away from the construction areas. We’ve also coppiced hedgerows to protect nesting birds and are installing special fences to ensure bats are able to navigate after we’ve carried out vegetation removal.