Towards a Minerals Local Plan for Derbyshire and Derby

Towards a Strategy for Safeguarding Mineral Resources


1       Introduction

1.1    Minerals provide essential raw materials for developing and sustaining our society – whether this is for construction, manufacturing, agriculture or energy production.  Minerals are a non-renewable resource, and can only be worked where they occur.  To protect these valuable resources for the long term to ensure that they are available for use by future generations, it is important that they are not sterilised by non-mineral development being built over, or in close proximity to, them, such as housing, retail or industry. 

1.2    Mineral Safeguarding Areas (MSAs) are designated to provide long term protection to areas of proven mineral resource that are considered to be of local and national importance.

1.3    The designation of MSAs does not convey any presumption that mineral extraction is acceptable; nor do they preclude other development from being permitted; their purpose is to provide a policy tool to ensure that mineral resources are taken into account alongside all other considerations when they are at risk from being lost to other forms of non-mineral development.  There is also no presumption against mineral extraction in areas that are not safeguarded, as MSAs may not necessarily capture every viable resource.  

1.4    This paper should be read in conjunction with the supporting paper on Mineral Safeguarding, which explains in more detail the background to how the strategy has developed.