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Sustainability

HS2 and the environment: we aim to build the most sustainable high speed railway in the world.

Wetland pond with Dutch barn and poplar trees in the background. An example of how we work at HS2 and the environment improvements we deliver
Finham Brook is a new wetland habitat HS2 created from wasteland near the route.

Britain’s biggest environment project

HS2 is Britain’s biggest environment project, delivering miles of ecological and landscape investments alongside construction. Find out more about the huge scale of environment work and the benefits.

We will deliver a railway that respects the natural environment by conserving, replacing or enhancing wildlife habitats with a new green corridor along the route.

For more examples of how we work at HS2 and the environment improvements we deliver visit our HS2 Green Corridor page about how we enhance both habitats and communities along the route.

 

Environmentally Responsible Travel

HS2 will be a greener way to travel, offering some of the lowest carbon emissions per passenger kilometre and significantly less than cars and domestic air travel.

High speed rail travel is low carbon

HS2’s long distance journeys will provide a low carbon alternative to the car or plane. HS2 will be a greener way to travel, offering some of the lowest carbon emissions per passenger kilometre:

  • 7 times less than passenger cars
  • 17 less than domestic air travel.

Find out how HS2 will support the transition to a net-zero carbon UK economy.

Our approach to woodlands

There are 52,000 ancient woodland sites in England. Our published assessments are that 43 will be affected by HS2’s route between London and Crewe. 80% of the total area of the 43 ancient woodlands will remain intact and untouched by HS2. Where an ancient woodland is described as affected, in many cases this means a small section of an overall woodland is affected. For example, on Phase One of the route, 32 ancient woodlands are described as affected but in 19 of these the total area of loss is less than 1 hectare (ha).

In addition, a £7 million HS2 Woodland Fund is available to help restore existing ancient woodlands and to create new native woodlands that connect or extend existing ancient woodlands.

Find out more about HS2 facts and our approach to woodlands.

tree nursery with workers walking between rows
HS2 will plant 7m trees along its route and fund woodlands beyond it too

Our mission to be sustainable

Our ambition is to build the most sustainable high speed railway of its kind in the world. We want a high speed railway network which changes the mode of choice for inter-city journeys, reinvigorates the rail network, supports the economy, creates jobs, reduces carbon emissions and provides reliable travel in a changing climate throughout the 21st century and beyond.

Find out more about our sustainability policy.

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