A proposal to build a new housing estate on the outskirts of a town or village may not seem to be a major threat to wildlife on the face of it but its the accumulation of 'developments' over time which push wildlife to the limits.
Often it's these types of developments which have an unseen and unrecorded effect on wildlife. Its only years later when people recall how an area used to be and what wildlife they used to see that they realise what has been lost... but by then its all too late.
Developments are allowed to go ahead because planning departments and planning laws insist that developers include a 'compensation scheme' in return for granting planning permission to destroy natural habitats. These compensation schemes may be to translocate grassland, create a nature reserve or plant some native trees. These are however just false hopes, government sanctioned bribes to placate the concerns of local people. In the long run, wildlife and ultimately we will suffer the consequences as wildlife habitats are fragmented.
As our population becomes more mobile, our society slowly loses the knowledge of 'local people' and as a result, the existing population whose roots originate from elsewhere do not have the accumulated knowledge of place in the present and the past. Eventually, not only do we lose important wildlife but we also lose local history, knowledge and social cohesion within our cities, towns and villages.
At what point do we say 'enough is enough'? When will governments realise that we have no more space left to build on... when will our economy no longer be built on the shaky foundations of house building and 'development' as a way of creating short term jobs and 'economic growth' for the benefit of the few and the detriment of the many?