Towards a Minerals Local Plan for Derbyshire and Derby

Towards a Strategy for Deep Mined Coal

Derbyshire County Council and Derby City Council (the mineral planning authorities) are working together to prepare a joint minerals local plan. It will be called the Derbyshire and Derby Joint Minerals Local Plan and cover the geographical area of Derbyshire, excluding the Peak District National Park. It will cover the period to 2030.

Minerals are essential raw materials, which are used to provide the infrastructure, buildings, energy and goods that our country needs.  They are vital for economic growth and our quality of life.  They are, however, a finite resource and can only be worked where they are found.  It is important therefore, that we make the best use of them to enable their long term conservation.

The Plan area has a wealth of mineral resources.  Mineral extraction and development has, for a long time, been a part of the Derbyshire landscape and an important part of the local economy, making an important contribution to the national, sub-regional and local need for minerals. Whilst mineral working can also provide environmental benefits, residents and local businesses are often concerned about any unwelcome impacts.

A clear, long-term Minerals Local Plan is a way of setting out the future scale and location of mineral working in the Plan area to support economic growth whilst protecting the environment and local communities. It is important that the Minerals Local Plan gets the balance right between the needs of the economy, the environment and local communities. It is vital, therefore, that communities, businesses, organisations and people throughout Derbyshire and Derby are involved in developing the Minerals Local Plan so that, as far as possible, it contains an agreed set of priorities that will deliver sustainable minerals development that is right for the Plan area.

This consultation presents a series of papers, which seek to develop further the emerging Vision and Objectives, Strategies and Policies of the Minerals Local Plan. We now need your comments, suggestions and input on these papers, which will then be used to feed into the Draft Minerals Local Plan.  We will ask for your views on this document later in the process.

 

This paper focuses on the extraction of deep-mined coal and should be read alongside a corresponding paper concerning extraction of coal by surface mining and the treatment of colliery spoil tips.  Some of the legislation on deep mined coal and the issues it raises are similar to those for surface mining and therefore the paper contains some duplication but this is necessary for those who only read the papers individually.

 

It summarises coal mining history in the Plan area and how that industry has shaped the place in which we now live and work. It acknowledges the extent of the remaining coal resource and identifies the issues that further mining would create. This includes a review of current Government policy on coal mining and how that policy affects the options available to the new Minerals Local Plan. This paper summarises the main messages from previous consultation exercises and stakeholder discussions and presents a number of potential options for the approach of the new Minerals Local Plan to future deep coal extraction in the Plan area.