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GLASGOW AND THE CLYDE VALLEY STRATEGIC DEVELOPMENT PLANNING AUTHORITY

SURFACE COAL SPATIAL FRAMEWORK PROPOSED METHODOLOGY March 2010


Glasgow and the Clyde Valley Strategic Development Planning Authority SURFACE COAL SPATIAL FRAMEWORK  PROPOSED METHODOLOGY  March 2010

Contents The Glasgow and Clyde Valley area ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������ii Introduction ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������1 Purposed of this Report����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������1 Strategic Environmental Assessment���������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������1 Consolidated Scottish Planning Policy ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������1 Current Structure Plan ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������2 Background to Methodology���������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������2 Proposed Methodology ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������3 Developing Assessment Criteria����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������3 Conclusion������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������6 Consultation Period ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������6

Glasgow and the Clyde Valley Strategic Development Planning Authority

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Glasgow and the Clyde Valley Strategic Development Planning Authority SURFACE COAL SPATIAL FRAMEWORK  PROPOSED METHODOLOGY  March 2010

The Glasgow and the Clyde Valley area

West Dunbartonshire East Dunbartonshire Inverclyde Glasgow City Renfrewshire

North Lanarkshire

East Renfrewshire

Constituent local authorities of the Glasgow and the Clyde Valley Strategic Development Plan Authority

South Lanarkshire

Area covered by the Glasgow and the Clyde Valley Strategic Development Plan

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Glasgow and the Clyde Valley Strategic Development Planning Authority


Glasgow and the Clyde Valley Strategic Development Planning Authority SURFACE COAL SPATIAL FRAMEWORK  PROPOSED METHODOLOGY  March 2010 Introduction 1

Surface coal mining is considered necessary and important in the national interest and whilst it can raise significant environmental issues, its extraction continues to play a significant role in ensuring diverse and secure supplies of energy at competitive prices.

Consolidated SPP: Coal 4

The consolidated SPP states that the SDP should identify broad areas where the extraction of coal by opencast methods may be acceptable and set out the criteria to be addressed when assessing individual proposals including mitigation of cumulative impacts. Nevertheless, within areas identified for possible future working, individual proposals will still need to be judged on their merits, taking into account all relevant considerations. The GCVSDPA is also required to reconsider identified search areas and consider new search areas, taking account of any new information on coal reserves.

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Having identified broad areas, the SPP requires that deposits of coal capable of being extracted should not be sterilised unnecessarily. If extraction is not possible because of other ongoing developments that raise similar issues in the area then planning authorities will take a long term view on the potential for extraction and incorporate possible extraction into the development plan. Where practicable it is desirable to secure extraction prior to permanent development above workable coal reserves.

Purpose of this Report 2

The purpose of this report is to consider how the requirements of the consolidated SPP for surface coal mining should be met in the Glasgow and Clyde Valley area. Unlike construction materials where a 10-year supply is required, there are no supply limits or targets for surface coal mining required by national policy. National policy leaves it to the operators to determine the level of output for which to aim in serving markets for energy production and expects the development plan system to respond to this situation. The GCVSDPA is expected to identify search areas, as necessary, in its Strategic Development Plan (SDP) and the specific requirements of national policy are set out below.

Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) 3

This consultation report merely seeks comment on the appropriateness of the proposed methodology and provides an indication of the likely spatial outcomes of applying these. This process will be further refined as the preparation of the SDP progresses and the proposals emerging from this and other relevant consultation documents and issues reports will be subject to the full SEA process along with the other elements of the SDP.

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Glasgow and the Clyde Valley Strategic Development Planning Authority SURFACE COAL SPATIAL FRAMEWORK  PROPOSED METHODOLOGY  March 2010 Current Structure Plan 6

The current Structure Plan position for opencast coal extraction is based on a review of the search areas. Strategic Policy 8 (SP 8) identifies six broad areas, namely:

Background to Methodology 8

The British Geological Survey (BGS) provides a comprehensive set of data on mineral resources (including coal) for the entire Glasgow and the Clyde Valley area and the current Structure Plan and National Planning Framework 2 confirm a policy commitment to sustainable growth. Since the last study on coal was conducted for the GCV area several sites within the search areas have been worked to varying degrees. The extent of this will be identified using planning application monitoring information and liaison with operators.

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From these background changes, the search areas should reflect the potential availability of coal using the most up-to-date and accurate information provided by BGS. Any areas that have been the subject of recent regionally significant mineral extraction are likely to be excluded from the search areas. Given the strategic nature of the SDP, overly precise or site specific search areas will be avoided since these details are more appropriately handled at the local planning authority level.

North East Airdrie; Shotts; Morningside; Wilsontown / Forth; Douglas Valley; and Hamilton / East Kilbride. 7

The current Structure Plan supports the extraction of opencast coal and related minerals developments in these locations and there is a general presumption against working outwith these areas. All proposals for new working, whether within or outwith search areas need to be assessed against the criteria in Strategic Policies 9 and 10. Relevant local plans are required to define these broad areas in more detail, and set out the criteria to be addressed when assessing individual proposals, with priority being given to rail transport wherever feasible.

Question 1 Comments are sought on whether the existing search areas continue to be appropriate and offer realistic opportunities for surface coal extraction.

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10 Developers should note that the search areas should be used only as a guide and any opencast development proposal will continue to be subject to a rigorous assessment of its effects on the environment and communities. The specific assessment criteria will be determined by the appropriate local authority. In this way, the search areas can be considered a tool for steering prospective developers away from areas that are likely to have unmitigatable effects on the environment and communities. 11 Proposals for surface coal extraction in areas outside the search area will not automatically be deemed unacceptable, however, the onus is on the developer to demonstrate the appropriateness of the development in terms of location and environmental and community impacts.

Glasgow and the Clyde Valley Strategic Development Planning Authority


Glasgow and the Clyde Valley Strategic Development Planning Authority SURFACE COAL SPATIAL FRAMEWORK  PROPOSED METHODOLOGY  March 2010 Proposed Methodology

Developing Assessment Criteria

12 The GCVSDPA will liaise with operators, neighbouring planning authorities, communities and use verifiable sources of information to identify appropriate search areas for the new SDP.

13 When considering planning applications, the consolidated SPP makes the following recommendations for surface coal extraction. Planning authorities will consider:

 disturbance and disruption from noise, blasting and vibration, and potential pollution of land, air and water;

The following methodology is proposed:

 A desk study including observations and a note of all shallow coal reserves within the GCV area as shown on the Mineral resources map produced by BGS. A map showing the known distribution of current surface coal working in the GCV area is attached. Please inform the GCVSDPA if there are any omissions or errors.

 impact on communities and the economy;  cumulative impact;  impact on natural and built heritage;  landscape and visual impact;

 The removal from this gross area of all main town and settlements, including a 500m buffer as per national policy.

 transport impacts;  restoration and aftercare proposals; and

 The identification of residual despoiled land, ie dereliction.  The removal from this gross area of all relevant national and international environmental designations.  The removal of recently completed significant opencast mining sites.  Identification of the remaining ‘net’ area as the new search areas for inclusion within the GCV area alongside the identification of relevant despoiled land which, following extraction, could contribute positively to the Green Network.

 residual despoiled land. 14 There will be a general presumption against extraction outwith areas of search identified in the development plan. Within the areas of search, there will be a presumption against surface coal extraction unless the proposed development meets one of the following tests:  the proposal is environmentally acceptable, or can be made so by planning conditions and/or agreements;or  the proposal provides local or community benefits which clearly outweigh the likely impacts of extraction. 15 Local or community benefits are likely to arise only in circumstances where extraction generates employment which is particularly beneficial in the area and jobs are genuinely available to local communities, or where there is improvement of local amenity or future development opportunities arising from the clearance of a substantial area of derelict or despoiled land, the stabilisation of a previously undermined site of other similar benefits.

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Glasgow and the Clyde Valley Strategic Development Planning Authority SURFACE COAL SPATIAL FRAMEWORK  PROPOSED METHODOLOGY  March 2010 16 Surface coal is also unlikely to be acceptable if:

 proposed site boundaries are within 500m of the edge of a settlement;  the proposal is for an extension to an existing site where the intention was not made explicit when the original application was approved;  it will result in a period of disturbance to communities for more than 10 years;  it is in an area already subject to other developments that also have negative environmental effects and the simultaneous or sequential working will result in an unacceptable cumulative impact on a local community;  haulage will be substantially based on roads which pass directly through communities, particularly if rail based transport is a viable option; or  it will adversely affect any natural or built heritage designation or site. 17 The SPP states that although site boundaries within 500m of the edge of a community are unlikely to be acceptable, this should not prevent non-engineering works such as tree planting or other mitigation measures such as visual screening mounds and noise attenuation barriers to reduce the landscape and visual impact of the development. Site boundaries within 500m of the edge of a community may be acceptable where it would result in improvement of local amenity or future development opportunities by clearing a substantial area of derelict or despoiled land, the stabilisation of a previously undermined site or other similar benefit. Specific local circumstances such as topography, the nature of the landscape, visibility and prevailing wind directions may result in a greater or lesser distance being required. In this context, the SPP states that a community is a city, town or village, but can also include small clusters of housing. Local planning authorities will decide what constitutes a community when applying this.

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18 The SPP requires that operators should work closely with communities from the early stages of developing specific proposals and throughout the application, operational and restoration phases. The applicant may propose benefits in the form of new community facilities or community trust funds but such benefits must not be treated as a material consideration unless they meet the tests set out in Circular 1/2010 Planning Agreements. Attempts to secure unreasonable provision not directly related to the proposed development or securing general benefits for the wider community should not be taken into account in decision making on planning applications. Planning authorities should ensure that arrangements are in place to monitor the conditions attached to planning permissions, and should agree these arrangements with the operator. 19 Proposals for the restoration and aftercare of a site should be submitted with the planning application and provide enough detail to enable the planning authority to take a realistic view of the intended after– use. This should include information on the phasing of progressive restoration, the final landform and landscape and monitoring procedures. Operators are encouraged to consider after uses that result in environmental improvement rather than simply restoring land to its previous state. Planning authorities will encourage after uses that add to the cultural, recreational or environmental assets of an area. Restoration should be designed and implemented to the highest standards to avoid the occurrence of future public safety and environmental hazards, such as land instability and emissions of gas or water. Planning authorities can require a financial guarantee to ensure adequate restoration and aftercare unless the operator can adequately demonstrate that their programme of restoration, including the arrangements for financing, phasing and aftercare of the site is sufficient. This could include reliance on an established and properly funded industry guarantee scheme. 20 Some of the above recommendations are more appropriately dealt with in the local development plan and these areas will be specifically identified as the spatial analysis progresses.

Glasgow and the Clyde Valley Strategic Development Planning Authority


Glasgow and the Clyde Valley Strategic Development Planning Authority SURFACE COAL SPATIAL FRAMEWORK  PROPOSED METHODOLOGY  March 2010

Question 2 Is this methodology strategic identification of ‘search areas’ in the SDP and assessment criteria in the LDP - considered to be the best approach for the GCV area? Given the strategic nature of the SDP and its focus, are there additional elements that should be included or steps that should be omitted?

21 The timescale for the consultation reports is outlined below: Joint working and targeted consultation

Industry discussions regarding long-term demand November 2009

Local Authority Survey January 2010

Awareness raising

Agree search area methodology April 2010

Identifying Search Areas May - June 2010

Formal consultation

MIR and SEA September 2010

Proposed Plan and SEA March 2011

Submission of Strategic Development Plan

Glasgow and the Clyde Valley Strategic Development Planning Authority

October 2011

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Glasgow and the Clyde Valley Strategic Development Planning Authority SURFACE COAL SPATIAL FRAMEWORK  PROPOSED METHODOLOGY  March 2010 Conclusion

Consultation Period

22 Search areas will be identified by the GCVSDPA and its constituent Authorities in line with national policy as part of the preparation of the GCV SDP. As a first step, the Topic Group will progress the desk study element and survey of local authorities. Combined with more detailed consideration at the Local Development Plan level, this report will form part of a robust tool for a positive framework for surface coal extraction within the context of the Government’s approach to sustainable growth.

23 Comments are sought on the proposed methodology by 23 April 2010 and sent to

Question 3

Dr Grahame Buchan Strategic Development Planning Manager Glasgow and the Clyde Valley Strategic Development Planning Authority Lower Ground Floor 125 West Regent Street Glasgow G2 2SA or by email to consultation01@gcvsdpa.gov.uk

Would the industry welcome the opportunity to discuss the methodology and emerging spatial framework at a workshop?

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Glasgow and the Clyde Valley Strategic Development Planning Authority


Glasgow and the Clyde Valley Strategic Development Planning Authority Lower Ground Floor, 125 West Regent Street, Glasgow G2 2SA telephone  0141 229 7739  fax  0141 221 4518  email  info@gcvsdpa.gov.uk  web  www.gcvsdpa.gov.uk

Surface Coal Spatial Framework Proposed Methodology March 2010  

Surface Coal Spatial Framework Proposed Methodology March 2010

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