Towards a Minerals Local Plan for Derbyshire and Derby

Towards Strategic Sustainability Principles

Principles for Sustainable Development

  1. Principles for Sustainable Development

1.1     Introduction

All proposals for minerals development should be in accordance with the overarching national principle for sustainable development.  This is encompassed in national planning policy and has also been identified as a key issue for the Minerals Local Plan (MLP) through discussions with all stakeholders and through local consultation responses.

1.2     National Policy Context

The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) promotes a presumption in favour of sustainable development, without defining precisely the concept for local areas.  It highlights the combination of an economic, environmental and social role for planning policy in delivering sustainable development, adhering to the basic principle that we should meet the needs of the present, without compromising the needs of future, generations.  It goes on to state that sustainable development involves seeking improvements to the quality of the built, natural and historic environment, as well as to people’s quality of life.  How this is interpreted for our area will be an important part of the MLP.

The NPPF gives a steer on what sustainable development means in terms of minerals issues.  It sets out that minerals are essential to support sustainable economic growth and the importance, therefore, of ensuring that there is a sufficient supply of minerals to provide the infrastructure, buildings, energy and goods that the country and its economy needs.  It also sets out in this context that since minerals are a finite resource it is important to make best and most efficient use of them to secure their long term conservation.


1.3     Progress So Far – What you have said and how we have responded

From the initial stages in the preparation of the MLP, people have consistently highlighted sustainability as being a key issue, which should underpin all policies and proposals in the MLP.  The need to support economic growth in the Plan area, whilst minimising the impact of mineral development on the environment and on local communities was a fundamental part of discussions at the first stakeholder workshop in July 2009.  These comments have been reinforced through responses received to the issues and options paper and at other subsequent engagement events, discussions and drop-ins.

There is support for an emerging approach in Derbyshire and Derby, whereby the Councils, when considering proposals for minerals development, will take a positive approach that reflects the national policy presumption in favour of sustainable economic development. 

As a result, the MLP will include an overarching sustainability policy which will guide all proposals for mineral development, to deliver what is considered to be sustainable minerals development for Derbyshire and Derby.  This will mean making provision for a steady and adequate supply of minerals in Derbyshire and Derby to meet identified needs throughout the Plan period, ensuring the efficient and prudent use of these resources and the minimisation and re-use of waste from mineral operations.  This approach will support proposals for mineral extraction that facilitate economic development, maintaining and enhancing Derbyshire’s position as a nationally important producer of minerals, including the creation of jobs, whilst at the same time seeking to improve the social conditions of the Plan area and minimising any damage to the environment. Social and environmental benefits will also be sought through restoration of mineral workings.    

1.4     Next Steps

These principles will be embedded in the MLP through the emerging draft Policy SMP1.  It gives the context for all other policies in the Minerals Local Plan and the decisions to be taken by the planning authorities on all applications for minerals development. 




Emerging Policy SMP1: Overarching Sustainability Principles


When considering proposals for mineral development, the Councils will take a positive approach that reflects the presumption in favour of sustainable development contained in the National Planning Policy Framework. The Councils will always work proactively with applicants to find solutions, which mean that proposals can be approved wherever possible, and to secure well- designed schemes and development that makes the most efficient use of the resource and improves the economic, social and environmental conditions in the plan area. Planning applications that accord with the relevant policies in this Minerals Local Plan will be approved without delay, unless material considerations indicate otherwise.


If there is an issue that is not addressed in this Plan, it will be judged in accordance with the policies in the National Planning Policy Framework.


Do you agree with this policy? Is there anything else that you think should be included? Please explain the reasons for your answer.