A recent study has been conducted as part of the Co-ordination of Information of the Environment (Corine), which is an EU project which began in 1985; to keep track of land use. Corine uses high-definition satellite image to create detailed maps of the UK.
Derby. Source: Corine Land Cover Atlas
The Derbyshire Dales is one of the least developed areas in the UK, with only 3% of the land classed as ‘built on’. A further 2% is green urban, and the highest percentage is farmland at 81%. 14% is classed as natural.
Derbyshire Dales. Source: Corine Land Cover Atlas
With 4 major towns in the locality (Alfreton, Ripley, Belper and Heanor), Amber Valley represents a more varied landscape, with 12% built on, 7% green urban, and 2% natural. However it still has a large amount of farmland, at 80%.
Amber Valley. Source: Corine Land Cover Atlas
We live our lives surrounded by buildings and roads, and as a result significantly overestimate how much there is. It is all too easy to forget how much undeveloped land there is out there to enjoy.
There is clearly a balance needed to be struck between the natural and developed world. If more green infrastructure were to be incorporated into our towns and cities, we might feel less overwhelmed by the built up areas we live our everyday lives in.
This information is readily available to everyone, in A Land Cover Atlas of the United Kingdom, accessible via: https://figshare.com/articles/A_Land_Cover_Atlas_of_the_United_Kingdom_Maps_/5219956
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