“NOWHERE will be safe” if the Government goes ahead with plans for investment zones across the UK, a leading charity has warned.

RSPB England, which represents the views of the UK-wide bird charity, issued a scathing response to the proposals – warning that they could “tear up the most fundamental protections our remaining wildlife has”.

As part of his mini-budget, Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng announced plans for the creation of dozens of low-tax, low-regulation investment zones.

The National: Kwasi Kwarteng with Prime Minister Liz TrussKwasi Kwarteng with Prime Minister Liz Truss (Image: PA)

These zones would allow planning restrictions to be eased in an effort to promote growth in local areas, according to the UK Government.

The first batch of 40 investment zones are set to launch across England, but the UK Government also plans to roll them out across Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Scotland’s deputy first minister John Swinney has said he will “keep discussing” the plans with his Westminster counterparts, but said any scheme would need to be “the right fit for Scotland”.

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Following the announcement on Friday, RSPB England expressed their serious concerns over the proposals and their environmental risk.

“As of today, from Cornwall to Cumbria, Norfolk to Nottingham wildlife is facing one of the greatest threats it’s faced in decades,” the charity warned.

The charity fears that the zones will result in building taking place “anywhere”. And with the new Retained EU Laws Bill looking to rid the UK of remaining legislation from the bloc, RSPB is worried that this could mean the end of “laws that protect our birds and animals, everywhere from forests to our coasts”.

“Where you live, the wildlife and places you love, from the shires to the cities – all under threat from bulldozers, from concrete,” the organisation warned.

“We cannot let this happen. And now more than ever nature needs your help. We need to make it abundantly clear that we will not stand for this,” RSPB England said.

The charity is now planning a “mass mobilisation”, and will release further information on that in the coming week. For now, they asking members of the public to tell their MPs how they feel about the proposals.

“If ever nature has needed you, it’s now,” they concluded.

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During the Conservative leadership contest, Liz Truss had pledged that investment zones would be key to her plan for growth.

The Government is also considering converting the post-Brexit freeports introduced by Boris Johnson into investment zones, where further deregulation is expected.

The following areas are in discussion to become investment zones:

– Blackpool Council

– Bedford Borough Council

– Central Bedfordshire Council

– Cheshire West and Chester Council

– Cornwall Council

– Cumbria County Council

– Derbyshire County Council

– Dorset Council

– East Riding of Yorkshire Council

– Essex County Council

– Greater London Authority

– Gloucestershire County Council

– Greater Manchester Combined Authority

– Hull City Council

– Kent County Council

– Lancashire County Council

– Leicestershire County Council

– Liverpool City Region

– North East Lincolnshire Council

– North Lincolnshire Council

– Norfolk County Council

– North of Tyne Combined Authority

– North Yorkshire County Council

– Nottinghamshire County Council

– Plymouth City Council

– Somerset County Council

– Southampton City Council

– Southend-on-Sea City Council

– Staffordshire County Council

– Stoke-on-Trent City Council

– Suffolk County Council

– Sunderland City Council

– South Yorkshire Combined Authority

– Tees Valley Combined Authority

– Warwickshire County Council

– West of England Combined Authority

– West Midlands Combined Authority

– West Yorkshire Combined Authority