Common Standards Monitoring (CSM)
Common Standards Monitoring for Designated Sites: First Six
Year Report 2006
The first 6 year report on common standards monitoring was
launched on 12 June 2006. It assesses the
species, habitats and geology on over 6,000 of the UK’s protected
areas, based on around 13,000 assessments made in the past six
What is Common Standards Monitoring?
One of the key responsibilities of the statutory nature
conservation agencies in the UK is the identification and
protection of a series of sites intended to conserve important
wildlife and earth science features. Such sites may be designated
- National legislation (Sites of Special Scientific Interest
(SSSIs) in Britain and Areas of Special Scientific Interest (ASSIs)
in Northern Ireland),
- European Directives (Special Areas of Conservation (SACs) and
Special Protection Areas (SPAs)), or
- International Conventions (Ramsar sites).
Once sites have been designated, the country agencies work
with owners, occupiers and others to secure their management and
Common Standards Monitoring is intended to be:
- A simple, quick, assessment of feature condition.
- For protected sites (SAC, SPA, Ramsar, SSSI, ASSI).
- Supported by limited, more detailed monitoring.
'Features' are the species, habitats and geological and
geomorphological characteristics for which sites are
protected. For example, they might be
- seals, butterflies, breeding birds
- woodlands, lagoons, heathlands
- fossils, landforms