Environment Agency survives Defra review but must reform
The Environment Agency and Natural England are to be retained as two separate public bodies, Environment Secretary Owen Paterson has announced.
The announcement, which came out of Defra's Triennial Review released today (June 28), will see both the Environment Agency and Natural England continue to operate with separate roles and functions.
However Paterson urged that both organisations should take steps to reform their services in order to add customer value and to drive greater efficiency savings.
In particular he said that there were opportunities to work with businesses in a way that could offer "a more integrated and effective customer experience". He added that there was a clear need to drive innovation across both entities going forward.
"The need to grow the rural economy in support of sustainable economic growth while improving the environment and delivering a better service has been at the forefront of my mind when finalising the conclusions of this Review," Paterson said.
"I am confident that the changes set out strike the right balance between retaining two strong bodies with clear remits to deliver Defra's priorities."