Towards a Minerals Local Plan for Derbyshire and Derby

Towards a Strategy for Cumulative Impacts

National and Other Policy Considerations

2       National and Other Policy Considerations

2.1National Planning Policy Framework

         The main policy objective of the National Planning Policy Framework is to help deliver sustainable development and in doing so it recognises the need to avoid any adverse impacts of developments which would significantly and demonstrably outweigh the benefits, when assessed against relevant policies. The policy guidance for minerals advocates that mineral planning authorities set out environmental criteria against which planning applications will be assessed to ensure that permitted operations do not have unacceptable adverse impacts, including the cumulative effects of multiple impacts from individual sites and/or a number of sites in a locality.

2.2    National Planning Practice Guidance

         The National Planning Practice Guidance reiterates much of the policy approach of the National Planning Policy Framework. For example, it identifies the environmental issues of mineral working that should be addressed by mineral planning authorities. At paragraph 17 however, it acknowledges that some parts of a mineral planning authority area may have been subjected to successive mineral development over a number of years and states that, where appropriate, mineral planning authorities should include appropriate policies in their minerals local plan to ensure that the cumulative impact of a proposed mineral development on the community and the environment will be acceptable.

2.3    National Planning Policy for Waste 2014

         The National Planning Policy for Waste 2014 supports the delivery of sustainable development and resource efficiency, including provision of modern infrastructure, local employment opportunities and wider climate change benefits by driving waste management up the waste hierarchy. It states that waste planning authorities should prepare local plans which identify sufficient opportunities to meet the identified needs of their area for the management of waste streams. With regard to the assessing the suitability of sites and/or areas for new or enhanced waste management facilities it states the criteria which should be taken into account, including the cumulative impact of existing and proposed waste disposal facilities on the well-being of the local community, including any significant adverse impacts on environmental quality, social cohesion and inclusion or economic potential.

2.4    Derby and Derbyshire Minerals Local Plan

         In the adopted Derby and Derbyshire Minerals Local Plan, April 2000, Policy MP4: Interests of Acknowledged Environmental Importance, states that proposals for mineral development will not be permitted where irreparable or unacceptable damage would result to interests of acknowledged environmental importance. With regard to cumulative impacts it states that one of the aspects for deciding whether a development was acceptable or not would be where it would result in an unacceptable cumulative impact on the environment of an area, either in relation to an individual proposal having regard to the collective effect of different impacts, or in relation to the effects of a number of mineral developments occurring either concurrently of successively.

         The supporting text to this policy indicates that cumulative impacts could arise where there is a concentration of mineral workings in a particular location, either concurrently or successively over a period of time, and where the local community has experienced more than its fair share of environmental disturbance. It notes that these concerns can be particularly relevant in the Derbyshire coalfield where the adverse effects of operations should not inhibit efforts to regenerate those areas. In addition it notes that proposals for mineral working may result in a series of environmental impacts which are not individually unacceptable, but which taken collectively and taking account of any impacts of other mineral or non-mineral developments in the same area may create unacceptable damage to the environment.

2.5Derby and Derbyshire Waste Local Plan

         The Local Plan contains Policy W10: Cumulative impact. It states that waste development will only be permitted if the development would not result in significant and detrimental cumulative impact on the environment of local communities. The supporting text identifies the issues of concentration of development, period of exposure, effect on regeneration and overall effect on environment as matters which decision makers will need to consider when assessing whether a development is likely to have a significant and detrimental cumulative impact.