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Chilterns Conservation Board deeply saddened as the Government gives the green light to High Speed 2

Wednesday 12 February 2020

The Chilterns Conservation Board is deeply saddened by the Government’s announcement giving the green light to the High Speed 2 (HS2) rail project.

HS2 will cause irrevocable damage to the natural beauty and tranquillity of the Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). Not only will HS2 destroy wildlife, habitats and ancient woodlands, it will place unprecedented demand on our fragile chalk aquifer, with potentially devastating impacts on Chilterns’ chalk streams - a globally rare habitat that is home to some of our most threatened animals and plants and the source of drinking water for almost one million people. Additionally, the rich archaeological legacy of this protected landscape, including fragile prehistoric earthworks, will be lost to future generations.

Dr Elaine King, Chief Executive Officer at the Chilterns Conservation Board said:

“The Government’s decision is hugely disappointing. We have significant concerns regarding the impact of HS2 on the Chilterns and have opposed the project from the outset. We will now continue to focus our efforts on securing the best possible outcomes for the wildlife, wild places and local communities of this special landscape.

The Government’s announcement to go ahead with HS2 makes no mention of the environmental impact of the project and flies in the face of the Government’s aspirations to leave the natural environment in a better state for future generations. It also comes at a time when public concern regarding the loss and degradation of our natural environment is at an all-time high.”

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