UK unveils new planning guidance for renewable and low carbon energy

30 July 2013 (Last Updated July 30th, 2013 18:30)

The UK Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) has unveiled a new planning guidance for renewable and low carbon energy.

WInd Turbine

The UK Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) has unveiled a new planning guidance for renewable and low carbon energy.

The planning guidance allows local communities to have a greater say on the installation of wind turbines and solar farms.

The guidance stresses the need for renewable energy that does not automatically override local environmental and heritage protections and the concerns of local communities.

DCLG said the guidance ensures environmental considerations, and factors such as landscape and heritage should be given proper weight when determining applications.

Local government secretary Eric Pickles said the views of local people must be listened to at the time of planning decisions.

"Meeting Britain's energy needs should not be used to justify the wrong development in the wrong location," Pickles said.

"The planning guidance allows local communities to have a greater say on the installation of wind turbines and solar farms."

"This new guidance is an important step in ensuring that communities can continue to shape their local surroundings and that landscape and heritage are properly considered and protected."

RenewableUK deputy chief executive Maf Smith was quoted by The Guardian as saying that the guidance highlighted the need to balance a range of environmental concerns when planning a new development.

"Following a long debate about onshore wind costs and benefits, we trust that this period of uncertainty for the industry is now at an end, and that we will see planning policy and guidance producing robust, objective planning decisions," Smith said.

In June 2013, the UK Government unveiled a new planning guidance, which will allow local communities to have more decision-making power over the construction of onshore wind farms.


Image: The planning guidance allows local communities to have a greater say on the installation of wind turbines and solar farms. Photo: courtesy of the UK government.

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