Environment and sustainable transport
Our natural environment makes Wiltshire an attractive place. It enhances our quality of life, improves physical and mental health, and underpins our economy. Yet Wiltshire’s natural environment, as everywhere, is undergoing substantial changes driven by factors including population growth, development and climate change.
In February 2019, the council acknowledged the climate emergency and committed to working towards making the county of Wiltshire carbon neutral by 2030. The indicators in this section aim to support this commitment by assisting with the identification of local priorities at a community area level. From the management of waste through recycling, composting and reuse within the UK (instead of sending it overseas), to the reduction of fly tipping and air pollution, to indicators of transport patterns, carbon emissions and domestic energy efficiency, the indicators here describe some key elements of the current situation and provide an evidence base for further action to support and protect our vital natural environment.
The CAJSNA information is primarily shown in interactive charts. These allow the user to hover over them and show extra detail within a tooltip, as well as the ability to remove indicators by deselecting them from the legend.
Sites of Special Scientific Interest and County Wildlife Sites
A Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) is an area of land that has been notified and protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. It is a formal conservation designation and an SSSI covers a variety of important wildlife habitats and species, from rivers and moorlands to meadows rich in wild-flowers wetlands. Each SSSI was selected due to it containing special features of particular interest, such as a threatened habitat, endangered species or unique geological features.
County Wildlife Sites (CWSs) can be found on both public and private land and, while CWS recognition is non-statutory, it recognises the high value for biodiversity of an area. Outside of statutory protected sites such as SSSIs, CWSs are some of the most important areas for conservation and wildlife.
Combining SSSIs and CWSs to show the proportion of each community area designated as these sites can give us an insight into the areas in Wiltshire that are rich in biodiversity and important wildlife habitats. Stonehenge, Warminster and Westbury Area Boards all have a large percentage of the total community area designated as either an SSSI or CWS.
Definition: Proportion of community area designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest or as a County Wildlife Site.
Data source and time period: Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs, Natural England Open Data Geoportal (SSSIs). Wiltshire and Swindon Biological Records Centre, County Wildlife Sites, Wiltshire Council GIS layer (CWSs). October 2023.