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Action Plan:  Habitats
Rivers and Streams
  • Maintain and improve the quality of water in Staffordshire's rivers and streams so that they can support a higher biodiversity.
  • Maintain existing important natural river features.
  • Restore and create further 'natural' river features in key areas.
  • Restore 30km of river corridor by 2010.
  • Restore the Trent and Tame river corridors between Burton-upon-Trent and Tamworth (through the Central Rivers Project) to achieve multi-purpose use by 2018. Include provisions to increase the level of habitats in the area - in particular, lowland wet grassland, reedbeds and associated woodlands to specifically meet the regional habitat / species action plan targets.
  • Ensure that all rivers reach their appropriate Statutory Water Quality Objectives (SWQOs) by 2010.
  • Install 50km of riverside fencing by 2010.
  • Create 50 off-channel and in-channel features by 2010. 
  • 50km of river with bank side re-profiling by 2010.
Total achievements to date (November 1998 - March 2001)
  • Hanson Aggregates, Environment Agency, BTCV and National Forest Tender Schemes have restored 7.65km of river corridor at various locations. 
Current Action
Protection and Policy
  • Some key stretches of rivers have been notified as SSSIs.
  • Certain riverine species such as otters, water voles and white-clawed crayfish plus their occupied habitat are legally protected under The Wildlife & Countryside Act, 1981 and The Conservation (Natural Habitats & Countryside) Regulations, 1994.
  • River Trent Action Plan has been produced for the City of Stoke-on-Trent.
  • River improvements are targeted in various LEAPS that operate within the County.
Management, Research and Survey
  • EA departments manage rivers to balance interests of conservation, water resources, flood defence, pollution control fisheries and sustainable development. LEAPs provide a framework for public consultation regarding management work based on major river catchment areas.
  • Statutory Water Quality Objectives (SWQOs) are set for all river stretches.
  • Agri-environmental grant schemes e.g. Countryside Stewardship (DEFRA) provide incentives for conservation based management of river corridors. FWAG, SWT (Otter & Water Vole Project) and RSPB also provide recommendations for landowner management options.
  • A 'Restoring Power to the Wetlands' project (managed by Staffordshire Wildlife Trust and funded by Powergen) operates in the east of Staffordshire.  
Action Plan

UK Lead Organisation:

County Lead Organisation:

  • Ensure that SWQOs will support ecosystems and species of that river type and geographic and topographic location, with no deterioration in quality. (EA) 
  • Review consents that allow excessive abstraction. (EA)
  • Ensure that Drought Orders and Permits do not compromise the wildlife and ecology of affected watercourses. (EA)
  • Develop and implement strategies to protect headwaters. (EA)
  • Promote the use of Sustainable Drainage Systems in all new development from 2001. (SBAP Partnership)
  • Ensure any examples of rivers or streams that meet the required criteria are given SBI status. (SBI Grading Committee)
  • Ensure appropriate rivers or streams meeting the SSSI criteria are designated. (EN)
  • Seek to restore river courses and create further 'natural' river features in key areas. (Mineral Companies, Developers, Water Companies)
  • Promote the sympathetic management of rivers and their corridors through existing projects, including buffer zones and wildlife corridors. (EA, SWT)
Monitoring and Research
  • Reassess the potential damage to groundwater fed wetland features due to groundwater abstractions in exempt areas. (EA)
  • Identify and survey headwater streams. (EA)
  • Seek to survey rivers and streams with a view to incorporating good stretches into the SBI site system. (SBAP Partnership)
  • Seek to carry out invertebrate surveys of key stretches or river supporting exposed riverine sediment. (EA, SWT)
  • Seek to monitor the creation, restoration and management of this habitat throughout the County. (SWT)
  • Promote the biodiversity and landscape value of rivers and streams to the public and landowners. (SBAP Partnership)
  • Promote good advice on best approaches to river corridor, catchment management and agricultural practices. (EA, SWT)

Complementary Plans
  • Staffordshire Wet Woodland HAP
  • Staffordshire Reedbed HAP
  • Staffordshire Lowland Wet Grassland HAP
  • Staffordshire Otter SAP
  • Staffordshire Water Vole SAP 
  • Staffordshire White-clawed Crayfish SAP
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