Environment Fund

Our aim is a Strategic Road Network that works more harmoniously with its surroundings to deliver an improved environment.

We believe in operating and improving our roads in a way that protects and supports people and the things we value for our quality of life, both now and for future generations. We want a Strategic Road Network that works more harmoniously with its surroundings and is better for both people and wildlife.
In line with Highways England’s Environment Strategy, the Environment Fund’s purpose is to create environmental opportunities alongside our network and to address historical environmental issues associated with the network which have arisen from previous design and construction practices.

Our fund is split into seven key areas to target specific environmental topics:

  • Noise – Reducing the network’s noise impact, contributing towards Highways England’s KPI to mitigate noise at 1,150 of approximately 2,500 Noise Important Areas.
  • Carbon – Reducing the network’s carbon footprint.
  • Flooding and Water Quality – Improving resilience to flooding and reducing flooding risks to communities closely situated to the network. Improving water quality through better environmental protection, specifically through developing surface and groundwater quality.
  • Landscape – Improving the landscape’s quality to better integrate the network into its surroundings and which deliver associated ecosystem benefits.
  • Biodiversity – Working together to enhance the biodiversity value of our estate, and areas of wildlife value where our operations have left a long-term impact. The sub-fund contributes to Highways England’s aims to eliminate the net loss of biodiversity by 2020 and to achieve a net gain in biodiversity by 2040.
  • Cultural Heritage – Reducing the network’s impact on the historic environment. Conserving and enhancing the setting and condition of cultural heritage and historic features close to the network.
  • Legacy – Additional contributory benefits in operating and maintaining the network. Activities and initiatives that support better design, enhanced environmental outcomes and contribute to an improved quality of life for those living near our network.


To be considered for funding, a proposal is reviewed and assessed against the following key criteria:

  • Demonstrate that the intervention is providing added value to our schemes
  • Align with one or more of the seven topics and should clearly identify the primary environmental benefit being addressed
  • Be a capital scheme leading to environmental improvement on the ground. Higher priority will be given to schemes that contribute directly towards Highways England’s KPIs and Performance Indicators
  • Identify capital works either on our estate, or which have a clear relationship with it
  • Clearly demonstrate that any proposal relating to our estate and/or any additional land can be secured by agreement
  • Result in a measurable improvement in the network’s environmental performance
  • Maximise opportunities for joint funding or partnership
  • Demonstrate value for money