Invasive Plants

Japanese Knotweed

Japanese Knotweed


1.  Provision of detailed information about this invasive plant species and its control
The Council will direct enquiries to the advice of Natural England, the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (defra) and the Environment Agency at www.gov.uk/guidance/prevent-the-spread-of-harmful-invasive-and-non-native-plants.

2.  The plant growing on Amber Valley Borough Council land
The Council will maintain a register of all sites and investigate any reports of new sightings with a view to updating the register.

The plant will be treated in accordance with the advice of Natural England, the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (defra) and the Environment Agency at www.gov.uk/guidance/prevent-the-spread-of-harmful-invasive-and-non-native-plants and the treatment will be recorded in the register.  Normally this will involve the application of an appropriate herbicide, commonly on two occasions each growing season, until the plant is eradicated.

The Council will ensure that all relevant employees are aware of registered sites and of the above advice to control the plant and prevent spreading.

The Council will ensure that relevant employees are aware of their responsibility with regard to the ordering, collecting, transporting or use of topsoil and that only clean and uncontaminated soil is used.

Where appropriate, the Council will seek to ensure that any work carried out on Council land by a third party, including utility companies and statutory undertakers, will have in place appropriate control measures to prevent the spread of the plant.

Where the plant is present on land that the Council is proposing to dispose of, the Council will seek to impose conditions on the disposal to avoid the spread of the plant from the site onto adjoining land, in accordance with the above advice.

3.  The plant growing on private land
a)  Contacts from owners of land affected by the plant
Owners will be directed to the advice of Natural England, the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (defra) and the Environment Agency at www.gov.uk/guidance/prevent-the-spread-of-harmful-invasive-and-non-native-plants.  They will also be advised that if they allow the plant to spread onto neighbouring land they may be causing a private nuisance and should therefore use the same advice to control it and prevent spreading.  They will also be advised that neither the Environment Agency nor Amber Valley Borough Council is obliged to control this plant on their behalf.

b)  Contacts from neighbours of land affected by the plant
The growth, or the effects, of the plant are not prejudicial to human health and are not associated with disease or other health related matters and consequently cannot be addressed by the Council as a statutory nuisance.

The use of the discretionary powers under Section 215 of the Town & Country Planning Act 1990 and Part 4 of the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014, which enable steps to be taken requiring land to be cleaned up when its condition adversely affects the amenity of the area, are not considered appropriate because of the extensive treatment period necessary to destroy the plant.

The Council will generally not take any formal action in this circumstance.  The neighbour will be advised that if he considers the plant to be causing a private nuisance to him, he should co-operate with the landowner and seek to control the problem amicably, rather than resort to legal action.  The Council will further advise that if this proves to be unsuccessful, a solicitor or the Citizens' Advice Bureau would be able to offer advice on how to take private nuisance action against the responsible landowner.

c)  Development sites
Where the Council becomes aware of the growth of the plant on such sites, it will ensure that developers are made aware of their responsibilities at the earliest stage possible to ensure that no further contamination occurs.  Developers will also be reminded of the advice of Natural England, the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (defra) and the Environment Agency at www.gov.uk/guidance/prevent-the-spread-of-harmful-invasive-and-non-native-plants.

The Council will seek to secure appropriate planning conditions through the development control process to ensure developers control and eradicate the plant on their land.

Common Ragwort

Common Ragwort

Local Authorities have no legal powers to deal with Common Ragwort on private land; however, the Weeds Act 1959 allows (but does not require) the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (defra), via Natural England, to take statutory action to control the spread of certain harmful weeds, including Common Ragwort.  Natural England will only take action if weeds are threatening land used for one of the following:

  • keeping or grazing horses and other livestock;
  • farmland used to produce conserved forage (for example, silage and hay);
  • agriculture.


The Council will direct enquiries to the advice of Natural England, the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (defra) and the Environment Agency at www.gov.uk/guidance/prevent-the-spread-of-harmful-invasive-and-non-native-plants.

 

 

 

 

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