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Statutory biodiversity credit prices announced by UK government

todayJuly 27, 2023


Statutory biodiversity credit prices announced by UK government

On 27th July 2023, the UK government announced the pricing of biodiversity credits. The prices are an important indication of how Biodiversity Net Gain will take centre stage for larger developments from November 2023.

Be sure not to head over to the government page and look at the pricing tables only, and overlook this ultra important line that is included on the page.

“You must buy 2 credits for every 1 biodiversity unit you need to compensate for.”

This might come as a shock. However, it is very logical as it takes into account the fact that the credits could be spent anywhere in the country, so it gives the same spatial multiplier as offsite compensation beyond the neighbouring LPA.

About Statutory Biodiversity Credit Prices

Buying statutory biodiversity credits is a last resort option for developers if you are unable to use on-site or off-site units to deliver biodiversity net gain (BNG).

You will be able to buy statutory biodiversity credits using a credit sales service, which will be available once BNG becomes mandatory.

These prices are indicative, which means they give an indication of likely prices, to help developers plan ahead. We will publish confirmed prices when biodiversity net gain becomes mandatory.

All prices are exclusive of VAT. VAT will be included in the invoice for any statutory credit purchase.

Using the statutory biodiversity metric to calculate biodiversity credits

To support you with calculating how many credits you need, we are working on an addition to the biodiversity metric. This will be available in the statutory biodiversity metric tool, when BNG becomes mandatory.

If you buy statutory biodiversity credits, a ‘spatial risk multiplier’ will apply, which doubles the amount of credits you need. You must buy 2 credits for every 1 biodiversity unit you need to compensate for. The statutory biodiversity metric will automatically calculate this multiplication for you.

You can find more information about the spatial risk multiplier in the Biodiversity Metric 4.0 user guide, section 7.4 (page 29).

Information about terms in the table

For each habitat type in the table below, you can see its ‘tier’. Biodiversity credit prices are tiered, to reflect the cost and value of different habitats. When you access the credit sales service, you’ll have to pick which tier or tiers you are buying.

The prices in the table are per credit. The spatial risk multiplier is not accounted for in the prices in the table.

‘Distinctiveness’ is a measure based on the type of habitat and its distinguishing features. It measures different ecological factors, such as:

  • the rarity of the habitat
  • species richness within a habitat

Area habitats

Low distinctiveness habitats

Habitat distinctivenessBroad habitat typeSpecific habitat typePrice per creditTier

Medium distinctiveness habitats

Habitat distinctivenessBroad habitat typeSpecific habitat typePrice per creditTier
MediumHeathland and shrubAll£42,000A1
MediumIndividual treesAll£42,000A1
MediumWoodland and forestAll£48,000A2
MediumIntertidal sedimentAll£48,000A2
MediumLakes – ponds (non-priority habitat)Ponds£125,000A4
MediumSparsely vegetated landOther inland rock and scree£125,000A4

High distinctiveness habitats

Habitat distinctivenessBroad habitat typeSpecific habitat typePrice per creditTier
HighGrasslandTraditional orchards£42,000A1
HighGrasslandLowland calcareous grassland£48,000A2
HighGrasslandTall herb communities (H6430)£48,000A2
HighGrasslandUpland calcareous grassland£48,000A2
HighHeathland and shrubDunes with sea buckthorn£48,000A2
HighHeathland and shrubLowland heathland£48,000A2
HighHeathland and shrubUpland heathland£48,000A2
HighUrbanOpen mosaic habitats on previously developed land£48,000A2
HighWoodland and forestWet woodland£66,000A3
HighWoodland and forestFelled£66,000A3
HighWoodland and forestUpland birchwoods£66,000A3
HighIntertidal sedimentLittoral mud£66,000A3
HighIntertidal sedimentLittoral mixed sediments£66,000A3
HighIntertidal sedimentLittoral – biogenic reefs – mussels£66,000A3
HighIntertidal sedimentLittoral biogenic reefs – Sabellaria£66,000A3
HighIntertidal sedimentFeatures of littoral sediment£66,000A3
HighIntertidal sedimentLittoral muddy sand£66,000A3
HighWetland mosaicFloodplain wetland mosaic (CFGM)£125,000A4
HighPondsPonds (priority habitat)£125,000A4
HighPondsTemporary lakes, ponds and pools£125,000A4
HighCoastal lagoonsCoastal lagoons£125,000A4
HighRocky shoreHigh energy littoral rock£125,000A4
HighRocky shoreModerate energy littoral rock£125,000A4
HighRocky shoreLow energy littoral rock£125,000A4
HighRocky shoreFeatures of littoral rock£125,000A4
HighCoastal saltmarshSaltmarshes and saline reedbeds£125,000A4
HighIntertidal sedimentLittoral seagrass£125,000A4
HighSparsely vegetated landCoastal sand dunes£125,000A4
HighSparsely vegetated landCoastal vegetated shingle£125,000A4
HighSparsely vegetated landMaritime cliff and slopes£125,000A4
HighSparsely vegetated landInland rock outcrop and scree habitats£125,000A4
HighWoodland and forestUpland mixed ashwoods£125,000A4
HighWoodland and forestNative pine woodlands£125,000A4
HighWoodland and forestLowland mixed deciduous woodland£125,000A4
HighWoodland and forestLowland beech and yew woodland£125,000A4
HighWoodland and forestUpland oakwood£125,000A4
HighLakesHigh alkalinity lakes£650,000A5
HighLakesLow alkalinity lakes£650,000A5
HighLakesMarl lakes£650,000A5
HighLakesModerate alkalinity lakes£650,000A5
HighLakesPeat lakes£650,000A5

Linear habitats


Habitat distinctivenessBroad habitat typeSpecific habitat typePrice per creditTier


Habitat distinctivenessBroad habitat typeSpecific habitat typePrice per creditTier
VariousRivers and streamsAll£230,000W

Read more about Statutory biodiversity credit prices here.

Beyond Biodiversity Net Gain Online Training

This news came in as we were recording with multi-award winning ecologist, Claire Wansbury and top environmental lawyer, Ben Stansfield for the Beyond Biodiversity Net Gain Online Training

To listen to an episode that focuses on this series, go to – S2, E12: Claire Wansbury Beyond Biodiversity Net Gain Training


Later on 27th July 2023, the Conservation Covenants Criteria were announced.

Written by: Jackie De Burca

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