||The project will bring an understanding of existing planning policy and planning requirements, policy gaps as associated with a future Smart Systems and Heat (SSH) market, more certainty on future timelines/budget, key risks/benefits, define a Town Planning strategy for Phase 2 and establish key Planning Officer relationships. In addition the work will provide a plan and budget to achieve planning consent and also start the process for achieving planning consents for chosen locations.
Achieving relevant planning permission is key to both the short and long-term success of Smart Systems and Heat. This report, Volume Two, reviews the current policy, pinpointing relevant mechanisms for achieving the necessary transition to future-proof local energy solutions. The report provides the reader with an understanding of existing planning policy and planning requirements as associatedwith a future SSH market. In addition the work provides a plan and budget to achieve planning consent
The SSH Programme aims to create future-proof and economic heating solutions for the UK. This means solutions that work in the present and immediate future with the ability to adapt to circumstances in the longer term. It means technical solutions that can be deployed and work in a market environment to the benefit of industry. It also means solutions tailored for specific locations, designed within a national context.
From our review of UK energy and heat policy it is clear that various policy documents recognise the pivotal role that Local Authorities throughout the UK have in enabling the development, deployment and expansion of heat and low carbon decentralised energy networks. It is also evident that the position in terms of national planning policy and guidance is further developed and more detailed in England and Scotland compared to Wales. The overall conclusion reached on the national planning policy positionis that whilst it is referenced in documents such as the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and the more recent Planning Practice Guide (PPG) in England, and in Scottish Planning Policy (SPP), it could be strengthened to accelerate and enable wider deployment of type of development infrastructure that could come forward under the SSH Programme, across the UK.
This Report also contains recommendations in relation to consenting procedures. We summarise the consenting regime in the UK, with reference to the planning system and current policies, and consider three potential mechanisms for delivering consent for the likely development proposals, having regard to a number of case studies; this includes consideration of the General Permitted Development Order(GPDO), Local Development Orders (LDO) and the use of planning applications.The strengths and weaknesses of each consenting option have been considered along with indicative timeframe.