Pre- Submission Draft Waste Local Plan

Ended on the 11 October 2023
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8. Development Management Policies

Introduction

8.1. The purpose of development management policies is to help to deliver the strategic policies and objectives by providing the criteria against which future waste development will be assessed. They relate specifically to individual, site level criteria such as environmental impacts and standards and provide guidance about how planning applications for waste development in the Nottinghamshire and Nottingham will be assessed. It should be noted that as outlined in the NPPW, when determining decisions, the Councils will not concern themselves with the control of processes which are a matter for the pollution control authorities. The Councils will work on the assumption that the relevant pollution control regime will be properly applied and enforced.

8.2. Applicants are advised to discuss proposals for waste development with the Nottinghamshire or Nottingham City prior to submission of a planning application, as set out in the relevant adopted Statement of Community Involvement (SCI). Such pre-application engagement can enable early identification of potential constraints and has the potential to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the planning system. This approach is encouraged by the Government and more details are set out in the National Planning Policy Framework. Applications for waste development should provide sufficient information to allow a balanced assessment to be made. It may also be beneficial for the applicants to seek pre-permitting advice from the Environment Agency where applicable.

8.3. Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is often required for major developments that are likely to have significant impacts on the environment. The EIA process is used to identify the likelihood of significant impacts occurring as a result of a development, how these could be mitigated, and alternative ways in which the development could be carried out. Where EIA is required, the findings of this process must be included in a separate Environmental Statement to be submitted alongside the planning application.

8.4. All waste planning applications that meet the appropriate thresholds and criteria set out in the EIA Regulations (2017) will therefore be screened to determine whether or not EIA is required. Applicants may also request a formal screening opinion from the Councils prior to submitting a planning application. Where EIA is required, applicants may also request a scoping opinion setting out the issues to be addressed within the Environmental Statement.

DM1- General Site Criteria

Introduction

8.5. Policy SP3 establishes the broad principles/areas where waste management facilities are likely to be appropriate. However, not every type of waste management use will be appropriate in every location. Certain types of facilities have specific land-use requirements and/or more intensive impacts. Policy DM1 sets out a criteria-based approach to show the types of locations that are likely to be suitable for different types of waste management facilities. This includes an indication/guide to the size and scale of development that is likely to be acceptable in different types of location. It is recognised that some proposals may fall under several categories, how this policy will be applied in such cases therefore will be dependent on the individual details provided at the application stage.

8.6. Policy DM1 applies to facilities for all types of waste, including those treating or disposing of hazardous waste, unless specified otherwise within the policy text. Where other circumstances arise that the Waste Local Plan could not foresee, proposals will be determined on their merits and in accordance with current national policy.

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(4)DM1 – General Site Criteria
Proposals for waste management facilities will be supported in the following general locations, as shown in the matrix below, subject to there being no unacceptable environmental impacts:

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Community sites – locations where people already travel for local services e.g. local shopping centres, leisure centres, supermarkets, schools etc.

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Employment land – areas which are already used, or are allocated, for employment related uses such as industrial estates, business parks or technology parks etc.

Previously developed land/derelict land – land that is no longer needed or has been abandoned. This includes land which has previously been used for some form of permanent, built, development that is no longer used but could also include mineral workings requiring restoration* or un-restored/poorly restored colliery land where there are no formal restoration requirements.

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Open countryside/agricultural land – rural land, including farmland, which is not covered by any other environmental designation, especially where this enables the re-use of farm or forestry buildings.

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Green Belt – land within the Green Belt where very special circumstances can be demonstrated for inappropriate development or where development is considered not to be inappropriate development. This could include derelict or previously developed land or mineral workings. All proposals will be subject to Green Belt policies.

*Once mineral sites are restored, these are considered green field sites

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Previously developed land/derelict land

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Combined Facilities

Resource recovery park

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Recycling

Bring sites

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Household Waste Recycling Centre

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Materials Recovery Facility

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Aggregates

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Metal/End-of-life vehicles

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Composting

Enclosed/In-Vessel

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Open-air

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Energy Recovery

Anaerobic Digestion

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Mechanical Biological Treatment

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Refuse Derived Fuel processing

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Incineration

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Gasification

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Pyrolysis

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Waste Transfer

Transfer station

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Waste Water Treatment

Waste Water Treatment

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Disposal

Landfill

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Landraise

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Justification

8.7. The NPPW states that waste planning authorities should consider a broad range of locations for waste management facilities including industrial sites and look for opportunities to co-locate waste management facilities together and/ or alongside complementary activities. Where possible, priority should be given to suitable previously developed land to promote reuse of these sites. As there are a wide range of different waste management technologies, and others may emerge in the future, it is important to consider the characteristics/land use requirements and likely environmental impacts of the different types of waste management process and the intensity of the operation proposed. Most waste management uses/facilities are industrial in nature and can be enclosed in a building but there some operations which may need to be carried out in the open air such as composting, wastewater treatment and some crushing and screening operations.

8.8. For waste management facilities that require a building, or are likely to involve significant vehicle movements, the emphasis is on areas that are already used, or are allocated, for employment such as industrial estates or logistics (warehousing and distribution) parks. Operations that need to be carried out in the open air should be located well away from uses which are sensitive to noise and dust.

Combined facilities – resource recovery parks

8.9. Some types of waste management facility can benefit from being located close together as this can minimise the distance waste is transported and increase opportunities for materials to be recovered and re-used. This includes recycling and waste transfer operations but could also include other non-waste uses that make use of the recycled products or materials. In some cases, there may be scope for energy recovery facilities to provide heat and/or power to other local premises. This could include anaerobic digestion schemes, incineration, gasification, pyrolysis or other emerging technologies. These schemes are often referred to as Resource Recovery Parks, or Energy Parks, where there is a strong emphasis on renewable and low carbon technologies. As these types of developments are likely to be more strategic in nature, they will benefit from good access to the strategic road network and potential rail or water links where these are physically and economically viable.

Recycling and waste transfer facilities

8.10. Larger materials recycling/recovery and waste transfer facilities usually need a large industrial type building within which to carry out the sorting and separation of materials and to store the resulting bales of paper, plastic etc. for collection. They will need good road access but the potential to use alternatives such as rail or water transport should be considered where practical. These types of facilities are therefore well suited to industrial estates and business parks, especially alongside other industrial type uses. Household Waste Recycling Centres would also be appropriate on industrial land, as these need to be accessible by both car and HGV. However, these also need to be close to the main residential areas they are intended to serve.

(1)8.11. Smaller, community scale facilities such as bring sites (bottle banks) should be located within easy walking distance of residents or at sites that people are already likely to visit such as shopping centres, supermarkets, leisure centres, village halls etc. Where community run facilities such as small scale, local, recycling or composting schemes are proposed, these should look to re-use existing buildings or previously developed land wherever possible.

8.12. Other types of recycling that are carried out in the open air, such as metal recycling sites and aggregates recycling will need to be located well away from uses which are sensitive to noise and dust. They will also need areas for stockpiles and storage and are best suited to general industrial areas alongside other heavy processing and manufacturing type uses. Where possible, these types of operations should be enclosed within a building to minimise any environmental impacts, but this may not always be feasible[7]. Temporary aggregates recycling facilities may be appropriate at quarries or landfill sites where this can encourage greater re-use and recycling and they are linked to the life of that facility[8].

Composting

8.13. Composting is generally suited to rural locations although special care would need to be taken where this involves a building, or permanent processing plant, in order not to introduce an industrial process into a rural area. Open air schemes will need to be a minimum distance away from uses that are sensitive to possible bio-aerosols. In-vessel or enclosed schemes are more likely to require a building and should therefore be located within or close to existing farm development and the scale of the development appropriate for its location. Where such schemes would involve significant vehicle movements they should be located within industrial areas.

Anaerobic digestion

8.14. The process of anaerobic digestion takes place within sealed tanks or silos. Large scale plants would again therefore be suited to general industrial areas. However, smaller plants may also be suitable in agricultural areas as they are similar to the types of storage tanks and silos found on farms. This would however depend on the scale and design of the plant and whether it can be accommodated alongside or within existing buildings for example. As anaerobic digestion is also used for sewage treatment, it may also be suitable within or alongside wastewater and sewage treatment plants.

Energy recovery facilities

8.15. Larger energy recovery plants (including incineration, gasification, pyrolysis, and possibly anaerobic digestion) will require a large industrial type building with a tall stack or chimney and, in some cases, may have visible plant or pipework on the outside which will have a visual impact on the surrounding area. These are therefore best located near other industrial uses of a similar scale and bulk with good road and/or rail or water access for transport. They should also be close to other uses that can make use of the heat and electricity generated or close to a suitable connection to the national grid. Smaller scale energy recovery facilities could be incorporated as part of mixed-use schemes, where these can serve the wider development. Mechanical biological treatment plants combine several different waste treatment processes and are therefore likely to require a single large building or a cluster of smaller buildings on one site. These would again therefore be suited to industrial estates and areas allocated for employment use.

Wastewater treatment

8.16. Wastewater and sewage treatment facilities can vary from large scale plants serving major urban areas to small rural plants serving a single village, with the latter requiring small facilities in the open countryside or green belt to be able to service these smaller settlements. They do not generate significant vehicle movements and their main impacts are likely to be visual and odourous as parts of the biological treatment process need to take place in the open air. For this reason, sites should be located away from housing and should be designed to minimise their impact on the surrounding landscape. However, the choice of sites will be limited by operational requirements such as local topography, pumping distances, and the need to discharge treated water into a suitable watercourse.

Disposal facilities

8.17. Landfill sites are classified into three different types based on the types of waste which they can accept – hazardous, non-hazardous, or inert (see Glossary). Both hazardous and non-hazardous landfill sites have the potential to produce harmful gases, leachate and odour and must be engineered and operated to ensure that the waste is safely contained whilst it decomposes. Hazardous and non-hazardous landfill sites must therefore be located in areas which are geologically suitable and well away from housing or other sensitive uses, aquifers, and watercourses. Inert landfill sites are less likely to cause environmental problems but there could still be local impacts relating to traffic, noise, mud, and dust. Whilst sites should be sited as far as possible from sensitive users, they also should be within reasonable reach of our main urban areas so to minimise the distance waste needs to travel for disposal.

8.18. The choice of possible locations to dispose of residual waste by either landfill or land-raise is increasingly limited. Disposal can provide a way to restore worked out quarries or colliery tips, but this depends on the type of waste to be disposed of and the local geology and ground conditions.

8.19. Landfill within the Green Belt may be acceptable if very special circumstances can be demonstrated. This could include the restoration of mineral workings. Land-raise schemes may be appropriate on derelict land where this would provide the best means of reclamation and could be considered on Greenfield sites if there are no other options. However, land-raise schemes are unlikely to be acceptable within the Green Belt because of the visual impact on the otherwise open character of the landscape.

8.20. In some circumstances, in the future it may be beneficial to re-work old landfill sites in order to recover materials that were previously thrown away but are now seen a valuable resource. This could include metal and plastics for example. This process is known as 'landfill mining' and, although it is a form of materials recovery, the environmental impacts will essentially be the same as for landfill or land-raise.

This policy helps to meet the following objectives:

SO1- Meet our future needs

DM2- Health, Wellbeing and Amenity

Introduction

8.21. Waste management facilities are strictly regulated by legislation to protect human health, with the Environment Agency through their environmental permitting regime ensuring facilities operate in a safe manner, with emissions being managed at an acceptable level. Waste facilities which are well run and well-regulated therefore should pose little risk to human health.

8.22. Understandably, waste management facilities can still be a concern for local communities, with worries around the potential effects from the development itself and the associated transport movements. Proposals for waste management facilities, for both new and when extending existing facilities, should consider potential impacts and ensure in the first instance these are avoided where possible. Where this is not possible, adequate mitigation measures should be in place to minimise the impacts to an acceptable level. Consideration will also be given to whether proposals are likely to result in an unacceptable cumulative impact (see Policy DM10- Cumulative Impacts of Development) in combination with other existing or proposed development and when proposals are expanding an existing facility or extending its life. All proposals will also need to be in accordance with relevant local planning policies set out within Nottinghamshire's Borough Council's Local Plans and Nottingham City's Local Plans.

(3)DM2 – Health, Wellbeing and Amenity

  1. Proposals for waste management facilities will be supported where it can be demonstrated that any potential adverse impacts on health, wellbeing and amenity arising from the construction, operation and, where relevant, restoration phase and any associated transport movements, are avoided or adequately mitigated to an acceptable level having regard to sensitive receptors.
  2. The types of impacts that need to be considered include, but are not restricted to:
    • Noise, lighting and vibrations
    • Air quality, including airborne emissions and dust
    • Odour
    • Litter and windblown material
    • Vermin, birds and pests
    • Visual Impacts
    • Traffic impacts
    • Stability of the land at and around the site, both above and below ground level
    • Loss of designated open/green space

Justification

(1)8.23. Ensuring a good standard of health, wellbeing and amenity for all existing and future occupants of land and buildings is a core planning principle of the National Planning Policy Framework. New and existing development should not contribute to, or be put at risk from, pollution or other sources of nuisance or intrusion which could adversely affect health, wellbeing and local amenity, particularly in relation to sensitive receptors.

8.24. The precise level of impacts will vary according to local conditions and the type and scale of the waste management facility proposed. Factors to be considered will therefore include the position of the proposed development in relation to other uses and the degree to which any adverse effects can be mitigated. Depending upon the proximity and sensitivity of surrounding land uses an appropriate stand-off distance may be required between the proposed waste management facility and nearby residential or other sensitive uses. This will be determined on a case-by-case basis taking account of any proposed mitigation measures.

8.25. Appendix B in the NPPW sets out factors that should be taken into account by the waste planning authorities when considering the likely impacts of waste facilities on local environment and amenity. The factors relating to amenity are reflected within this policy and the remaining addressed within other policies within the Plan.

8.26. Noise, light and vibration are impacts that can disrupt communities and amenity, particularly for larger waste management facilities where noise and vibrations can be generated by the waste management processes itself as well as the vehicles movements to and from the facility and internally. Such impacts can be reduced through measures such as enclosing operations and good design that locates noisy operations away from neighbouring properties and sensitive users.

8.27. Enclosing operations or waste storage areas can also help to mitigate air emissions, including dust and odour. Dust and air emissions can impact both ecological and human receptors, with emissions of bio-aerosols and nitrogen dioxide possible for some facilities and so it is important to control such using appropriate and well maintained and managed equipment and vehicles. An Air quality assessment may be required to consider the impact of proposed developments and its associated traffic movements, particularly if the development might adversely affect the air quality in an Air Quality Management Area.

8.28. Certain types of facilities, especially landfill sites, can attract vermin, birds and pests which can become a nuisance for residents and businesses nearby. This is covered by the permitting process by the Environment Agency. Birds can also be a hazard for aviation safety if the facility is located nearby to airfields, Policy DM11- Airfield Safeguarding provides further detail.

8.29. Potential impact on amenity from litter is often a problem mainly associated with disposal and transfer stations when waste is not compacted and can also occur when waste is being carried by vehicles that are uncovered. This along with mud on the road, noise and dust from increased vehicle movements are some impacts associated with traffic movements. Policy DM12- Highways Safety and Vehicle Movements Routeing details further measures relating to highway safety, but measures to control litter, dust and mud can include sheeting of lorries, wheel cleaning facilities and litter- trap fencing.

8.30. Since waste management facilities often need built development to operate, they often have visual impacts, though this will vary depending on the type and scale of facility. Careful design and using natural screening features can help to reduce visual impacts. Policy DM3- Design of Waste Management facilities and DM4- Landscape Protection provide further detail on minimising visual and landscape impacts.

8.31. Locations liable to land instability will not normally be suitable for some waste management facilities, with consideration needed to be given to the potential for migration of contamination. National policy is clear that where a site is affected by contamination or land stability issues, responsibility for securing a safe development rest with the developer and/ or landowner.

8.32. Areas of open space and locally designated Green Space Areas have an important role to play in protecting local amenity and can provide health and recreational benefits to people living and working nearby. They can also help to benefit local wildlife. Both Councils Health and Well-Being Strategies recognises the importance of our environment and having access to open green spaces in maintaining physical and mental health. For disposal sites where waste is used for restoration, such proposals can enhance health and well being through the provision of additional public open space or rights of way, the creation and/or enhancement of wildlife and biodiversity areas, landscape improvements, and the provision of community education or recreation facilities.

8.33. Where there is a possibility that a proposed waste management facility will require an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), developers are advised to consult the relevant Council well in advance of a planning application, and formally request an opinion on whether an EIA is required and, if so, its scope.

8.34. Where appropriate, avoidance or mitigation measures required to make a waste management facility acceptable as a result of this policy will be secured through planning conditions attached to the planning permission. Where measures cannot be secured in this way, planning obligations (also known as Section 106 Agreements) may be used to make the development acceptable in planning terms. See Policy DM9 - Planning Obligations for further details.

This policy helps to meet the following objectives:

SO5– Community, Health and Wellbeing

DM3- Design of Waste Management Facilities

Introduction

8.35. Policy DM1 sets out detailed criteria for the locations that may be suitable for different types of waste management facilities. To help integrate waste facilities into their locality and improve the public understanding and acceptance of essential waste management infrastructure, Policy DM3 seeks to ensure that all types of new and existing waste facilities looking to extend, adapt or redevelop, are designed to promote an innovative and sustainable waste management industry.

(4)DM3 – Design of Waste Management Facilities

  1. Planning permission for waste facilities will be granted where it can be demonstrated that the design of development
    1. Is of an appropriate scale, form, layout, orientation and materials for its location
    2. Provides well designed boundary treatments (including security features and screening) and site landscaping that reflect the function and character of the development and is well-integrated into its surroundings
    3. Minimises impacts and, where possible, enhances the natural and historic environment and surrounding landscape
       
  2. Proposals should also be designed to incorporate sustainable features, including those which:
    1. Minimise greenhouse gas emissions, including through energy efficiency, using renewable energy and green building construction techniques
    2. Ensure resilience and enable adaptation to climate change by taking into account flood risk and building orientation
    3. Minimise water consumption by using water recycling and sustainable surface water drainage where possible to avoid and reduce flooding
    4. Minimise the waste generated by re-using or recycling materials, buildings and infrastructure
    5. Minimise the loss of best and most versatile agricultural land and high-quality soil
    6. Encourage employees to use sustainable modes of transport where practical

Justification

8.36. Good design of waste facilities is important to ensure not only that the facility can operate and function well throughout its lifetime, but it can positively contribute to the character and quality of the local area. Through good layout, using the appropriate height and form as well as the right materials that are sympathetic to the local areas character, this will help waste facilities be understood and accepted as essential infrastructure which can be modern and not associated with negative impacts, such as odour and dirt. Design therefore can help to minimise and mitigate impacts that are often associated with waste sites and help facilities comply with Policy DM2. For example, through good landscaping and use of appropriate fencing this can help enhance local character, improve biodiversity, as well as reducing environmental emissions such as noise and litter.

8.37. Proposals should also follow best practice to ensure safe and efficient operation of the site, for example putting measures in place to improve fire safety and limit potential health and environmental impacts such an event could cause and ensuring emergency vehicles can access the site.

8.38. To integrate waste development within the local area, facilities should seek to minimise impacts on the landscape, natural and historic environment, seeking to protect and where possible enhance. Where there are impacts, then mitigation will be required and any proposals will need to demonstrate these are adequate as set out in the relevant development management policies of DM4, DM5 and DM6.

8.39. As well as having waste facilities that are designed and operated to the highest standards, facilities should also be designed to be sustainable, seeking to minimise impacts on the causes of climate change and ensure resilience to the changing climate as detailed in Policy SP5- Climate change.

8.40. Sustainable design initiatives can be achieved by various means, such as incorporating renewable energy, like solar panels, within the design to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

8.41. Incorporating grey water recycling systems and sustainable drainage systems can help to reduce water consumption and help to reduce and avoid increased flood risk (see Policy DM7- Flood Risk and Water Resources). Considering such features early in the design of facilities is recommended as this can lead to better integration and deliver multi-functional benefits.

8.42. Considering the potential changes to climate in the future, such as increased flood risk, will help to ensure facilities are resilient and adaptable. For built development, this may also include considering the orientation of the building to maximise cooling and avoid solar gain in the summer with rises in temperature expected.

8.43. Re-using and recycling building materials, existing buildings and infrastructure, such as haul roads, and reducing the amount of waste generated is also another key sustainable initiative. This helps to maximise our resource and minimise waste and our impact on the environment, one of the goals within the 25 year Environmental Improvement Plan (2023).

8.44. Agricultural land and high-quality soils are a vital natural and economic resource therefore it is important to protect the highest quality land from development that would harm the long-term soil quality and agricultural potential. The preference therefore will be to locate sites on poorer quality land to minimise the loss of the best and most versatile agricultural land (grades 1, 2 and 3a) and high-quality soils. However, if this is not possible the facility should be designed to minimise the loss of best and most versatile agricultural land and high-quality soils, such as minimising the footprint of the building,

8.45. For proposals which would generate significant employment, facilities should be designed to encourage employees to travel to work using sustainable modes of transport. For example, providing cycle storage sheds and adequate facilities to encourage employees to cycle to work.

This policy helps to meet the following objectives:

SO2– Climate Change, SO4 – The Environment SO7– High Quality Design and Operation

DM4- Landscape Protection

Introduction

8.46. The countryside and its landscape features are valued for many different reasons, not all of them related to traditional concepts of aesthetics and beauty. It can provide habitats for wildlife and evidence of how people have lived on the land and harnessed its resources. Landscape has a social and recreational community value, as an important part of people's day-to-day lives. It has an economic value, providing the context for economic activity and often being a central factor in attracting business and tourism.

(2)DM4 – Landscape Protection

  1. Proposals for waste development will be supported where it can be demonstrated that they will not have an adverse impact on the character and distinctiveness of the landscape.

  2. Development that would have an unacceptable impact on the landscape interest will only be permitted where there is no available alternative and the need for development outweighs the landscape interest. In such cases appropriate mitigation measures will be required.
     
  3. Proposals for waste development should be designed so they are sympathetic to, and compatible with, the landscape character. Landscape treatment, planting and restoration proposals should take account of the relevant landscape character policy area as set out in the Nottinghamshire Landscape Character Assessments covering Nottinghamshire and Nottingham and should refer to the associated species lists.

Justification

8.47. National Planning Guidance states that valued landscapes should be protected and enhanced. The guidance allows for the inclusion of criteria-based policies in Local Plans against which proposals for any development on or affecting landscapes will be judged. It also allows for policies that set out necessary mitigation measures, such as appropriate design principles and visual screening, where necessary. This is covered by Policy DM3: Design of Waste Management Facilities.

8.48. The landscape forms an important part of the character of Nottinghamshire and Nottingham and has evolved from a complex mix of natural and manmade influences such as geology, soil, climate and land use. This has given rise to a variety of landscapes that continue to change over time. All landscapes have a value, and some have potential to be improved and restored whereas others should be conserved, the published landscape character assessments provide guidance on this issue.

8.49. In order to manage changes to landscape character, three Landscape Character Assessments (LCA) were published in 2009 (Bassetlaw, Newark and Sherwood and Greater Nottingham including Ashfield and Mansfield (MDC Addendum 2015)), which cover the whole Plan Area and draw on the National Character Areas.

8.50. The LCAs identify specific features of the different Landscape Character Areas and this information can be used to give special protection to important landscape features or to identify suitable mitigation measures, such as tree planting to provide screening, when loss is unavoidable. It is also valuable in the design of restoration schemes for disposal sites.

8.51. The LCAs should be used to help develop waste development proposals and inform the local Landscape and Visual Impact Assessment required for waste proposals as appropriate to the proposed development, to ensure that the existing landscape and visual impacts on the surrounding areas have been considered.

This policy helps to meet the following objectives:

SO4 – The Environment, SO5 – Community, Health and Wellbeing

DM5- Protecting and Enhancing Biodiversity and Geodiversity

Introduction

8.52. The natural environment is a key element of sustainable development, with biodiversity and geodiversity essential to ecosystems which animals and humans depend upon to survive. The benefits associated with biodiversity and geodiversity are wide ranging, from providing natural flood protection to helping improve our physical and mental health. It is therefore important to ensure it is protected and, where possible, enhanced.

8.53. The government's approach to maintaining and enhancing the natural environment over the next 25 years is set out in A Green Future: Our 25 Year Environment Plan to improve the Environment (25 YEP), launched in January 2018, which contains a commitment to 'deliver an improved environment within a generation.' Included within the 25 YEP is the development of a Nature Recovery Network (NRN) to protect and restore wildlife, with the goal of providing 500,000 hectares of additional or enhanced wildlife habitat outside of the protected sites network. Following on from the vision set out in the 25 YEP, the Environment Act 2021 sets out how the new legal framework for improving the natural environment in the UK. It introduces a mandatory requirement for a minimum of 10% Biodiversity Net Gain (BNG) in the planning system, lays the foundation for the NRN and introduces provisions requiring the development of Local Nature Recovery Strategies (LNRS) across England, which are new spatial strategies that will establish priorities and map proposals for specific actions to drive nature's recovery at a local level. At this level, the Nottinghamshire Local Biodiversity Action Plan (LBAP) already identifies priorities for the conservation of habitats and species in Nottinghamshire, and the largely complete county Biodiversity Opportunity Map (BOM) identifies spatial priorities for the improvement, enlargement, expansion and connection of habitats.

8.54. Waste management facilities, like all developments, have the potential to have negative effects, directly and indirectly as well as cumulatively with other proposed developments, on biodiversity and geodiversity during their construction, operation and, where relevant, demolition and restoration. It is therefore important to ensure new waste management facilities are located and managed appropriately so that waste operations can be carried out without harming the environment as directed by Article 13 of the Waste Framework Directive, fulfilling the Vision and Strategic Objective Four.

(1)DM5 – Protecting and Enhancing Biodiversity and geodiversity

  1. Proposals for waste development will be supported where it can be demonstrated that:
    1. They will not adversely affect the integrity of an European site (either alone or in combination with other plans or projects, including as a result of changes to air or water quality, hydrology, noise, light and dust), unless there are no alternative solutions, imperative reasons of overriding public interest and necessary compensatory measures can be secured in accordance with the requirements of the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2017, as amended;
    2. They are not likely to give rise to an adverse effect on a Site of Special Scientific Interest, except where the need for and benefits of the development clearly outweigh the importance of the site and where no suitable alternative exists;
    3. They are not likely to give rise to the loss or deterioration of Local Sites (Local Wildlife Sites or Local Geological Sites) except where the need for and benefits of the development in that location outweigh the impacts;
    4. They would not result in the loss of populations of a priority species or areas of priority habitat except where the need for and benefits of the development in that location outweigh the impacts;
    5. Development that would result in the loss or deterioration of irreplaceable habitats will only be permitted where there are wholly exceptional reasons and a suitable compensation strategy exists.
       
  2. Where impacts on designated sites or priority habitats or species cannot be avoided, then:
    1. In the case of European sites, mitigation must be secured which will ensure that there would be no adverse effect on the integrity of the site(s). Where mitigation is not possible and the applicant relies upon imperative reasons of overriding public interest, the Councils will need to be satisfied that any necessary compensatory measures can be secured.
    2. In all other cases, adequate mitigation relative to the scale of the impact and the importance of the resource must be put in place, with compensation measures secured as a last resort.
       
  3. Proposals should enhance biodiversity and geological resources by ensuring that waste development:
    1. Retains, protects, restores and enhances features of biodiversity or geological interest, and provides for appropriate management of these features, and in doing so contributes to targets within the Nottinghamshire Local Biodiversity Action Plan and maximises gains in accordance with local plan targets and as a minimum provide 10% as per national requirements
    2. Makes provision for habitat adaptation and species migration, allowing species to respond to the impacts of climate change; and
    3. Maintains and enhances ecological networks, both within the County and beyond, through the protection and creation, where appropriate, of priority habitats and corridors, and linkages and steppingstones between such areas, contributing to the creation of the national Nature Recovery Network.

Justification

8.55. Within Nottinghamshire and Nottingham, there is an extensive network of designated and non-designated sites which are important for their biodiversity and geological interests. These range from international designated sites, also known as European or Natura 2000 sites, to local sites. Together these create an ecological network of habitats and green infrastructure which is unique to the Plan Area.

International Sites

8.56. International sites, or European or Natura 2000 sites as they are also known, are sites designated under the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2017, as amended (known as the Habitats regulation), and protect a range of species and habitats. Designations include Special Protection Areas (SPA), Special Areas of Conservation (SACs), with the same level of protection given to potential SPAs, possible SACs, all of which are found within Nottingham and Nottinghamshire.

8.57. The plan area currently has one designated international site; the Birklands and Bilhaugh SAC. There is also the 'possible potential' Special Protection Area (ppSPA) at Sherwood Forest, both sites are shown on Plan 1. Natural England's advice note provides further detail and mapping of the ppSPA.

8.58. In relation to the ppSPA, until the site becomes designated, the Councils will adopt a risk-based approach as advised by Natural England and assess any applications in accordance with the requirements of the Habitats Regulations.

National Sites

8.59. Sites which are the finest examples of wildlife and natural features in England are designated as Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) of which a subset are further designated as National Nature Reserves (NNRs). Local authorities can also establish Local Nature Reserves (LNRs) providing that the relevant statutory nature conservation agency approves. There are 67 SSSI sites, 1 NNR and 67 LNR's in the plan area.

Local Sites

8.60. Local Wildlife Sites (LWS), previously called Sites of Importance for Nature Conservation (SINCs) are local, non-statutory sites which are of at least county/ city level importance for the habitats and/or species that they support. These sites provide wildlife corridors between local, national and international sites and so help form an ecological network and are a key component of the Nature Recovery Network. There are also Local Geological Sites (LGS) which are designated based on geological features (such as important rock outcrops). Collectively, LWS and LGS are known as Local Sites, with there being over 1,400 LWS and 130 LGS in the plan area which are recorded by the Nottinghamshire Biological and Geological Records Centre.

Habitats and Species of Principal Importance

8.61. There are other habitats of conservation importance that fall outside of the above designated sites which are identified as Habitats of Principal Importance for Conservation in England. These are designated under Section 41 of the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act 2006 and regarded as conservation priorities in the UK Post 2010 Biodiversity Framework.

8.62. Similarly, many species in Nottinghamshire that do not receive legal protection are identified as Species of Principal Importance for Conservation in England. Both were formerly known as UK Biodiversity Action Plan (UKBAP) priority habitats or species and are also listed in the Nottinghamshire LBAP. They have high nature conservation value, contributing to the county's biodiversity and its ecological networks.

Protecting sites

8.63. Waste development proposals can impact the biodiversity and geodiversity found within the above sites and habitats. These include direct and indirect impacts as well as cumulative impacts if other development is also occurring nearby. Further consideration is given to cumulative impacts in Policy DM10.

8.64. National policy is clear that distinctions should be made between the hierarchy of international, national and locally designated sites so that protection is commensurate with their status and gives appropriate weight to their importance and the contribution that they make to wider ecological networks.

8.65. For International Sites, including the ppSPA, any proposal that was likely to have a significant effect, either alone or in combination with other plans or projects, would need to be supported by a Habitats Regulations Assessment to ensure any such effects can be mitigated. If the proposed development site hosts a priority habitat or species, and there is no suitable alternative solution or location for the development, permission will only be granted where the proposal relates to human health, public safety, provides beneficial consequences of primary importance to the environment or there are other imperative reasons of overriding public interest and where necessary compensatory measures can be secured.

8.66. For proposals that are likely to have an adverse effect on SSSI sites, either alone or in combination with other plans or projects, these will need to demonstrate the benefits of the development in the proposed location clearly outweighs the likely impact on the features that give the site its SSSI status and also outweigh any broader impacts on the national network of sites.

8.67. For proposals which give rise to the loss or deterioration of Local Sites, proposals will need to demonstrate the need for and benefits of the development in that location outweigh any potential impacts.

8.68. Proposed development sites which impact on Habitats and Species of Principal Importance, regardless of the habitats existing condition, will need to demonstrate there are wholly exceptional reasons. Where such reasons are ascertained, a suitable compensation strategy will be required.

8.69. To enable the Councils to determine a planning application, sufficient information is required and applicants will be expected to undertake an assessment of the potential effects of their development proposals on areas of biodiversity and/or geological interest that is appropriate to the scale and nature of the proposed development. Assessments should include an appropriate ecological survey and set out clearly the options proposed for avoiding, mitigating or compensating any adverse impact, working through the mitigation hierarchy as set out in paragraph 175a of the NPPF. Early engagement with the Councils and key stakeholders is recommended so the scope and detail required within any assessment can be determined.

Enhancing Biodiversity and Geodiversity

8.70. Waste facilities can also enhance biodiversity, particularly disposal sites which require restoration should be restored at the earliest opportunity and to high environmental standards.

8.71. Where the opportunities for enhancement exist, such opportunities should be maximised, with biodiversity net gain achieved, at a minimum of 10%, onsite where possible. Any enhancements should be in line with national and local targets and ensure habitats do not become fragmented and can adapt to the impacts of climate change. The Biodiversity Opportunity Mapping completed for a large part of Nottinghamshire should be used to help inform such proposals of any offsite gains until the Local Nature Recovery Strategy is adopted.

8.72. The City and County Council along with the District and Boroughs of Nottinghamshire have agreed to develop an aligned approach to delivering Biodiversity Net gain and are developing a Biodiversity Net Gain Framework which provides further detail on how biodiversity net gain can be delivered in Nottinghamshire and Nottingham. This outlines how 10% is the minimum target and higher gains will be encouraged where this is feasible and viable in line with targets set in City or District/ Borough wide Local Plans. Proposals therefore should seek to maximise biodiversity net gains, looking to go beyond 10% where possible.

8.73. Gains can be delivered through habitat creation or enhancement, achieved on site, off-site or through a combination of on-site and off-site measures or statutory biodiversity credits. Enhanced or created habitats will need to be secured for at least 30 years.

8.74. The Biodiversity Metric tool will be used in a habitat-based approach to determine a proxy biodiversity value (biodiversity units) based on the habitat's area/size, the quality of the habitat (its distinctiveness and strategic significance) and its condition. The existing biodiversity units of the proposed development site (the baseline/pre-intervention units) and the anticipated post-intervention biodiversity units following the development upon completion are calculated and by deducting the pre-intervention units from the post-intervention units, the net change can be calculated to ensure that 10% gain will be achieved and evidenced in a net gain plan for approval. Further information and the latest metric is available on Natural England's website.

8.75. It is intended that the Biodiversity metric tool is used to inform decisions where compensation for habitat loss is justified and therefore achieving net gain does not override the need to protect designated sites, protected or priority species and irreplaceable or priority habitats. It is also not intended for the tool to override ecological advice.

This policy helps to meet the following objectives:

SO4- The environment, SO5 – Community, Health and Wellbeing

DM6- Historic Environment

Introduction

(1)8.76. The historic environment includes all aspects of the environment resulting from the interaction between people and places through time, including all surviving physical remains of past human activity, whether visible, buried or submerged. It is important to conserve and protect the historic environment as it is an irreplaceable resource which brings a wide range of social, cultural, economic and environmental benefits, being enjoyed by current and future generations. Conserving, and where possible enhancing, the significance of heritage assets including their setting is therefore a key part of achieving sustainable development.

(7)DM6 – Historic Environment

  1. Proposals for waste development will be supported where heritage assets and their settings are conserved in a manner appropriate to their significance. Where possible, enhancement of the historic environment will be encouraged.
     
  2. Proposals, as a first principle, should avoid harm to the historic environment. Proposals likely to cause harm to the significance of a heritage asset, including its settings, will be subject to the policy requirements set out in the NPPF, including striking an appropriate balance between harm and public benefit.
     
  3. Proposals that would affect any heritage asset and/ or its setting, designated or non-designated, will need to be accompanied by a Heritage Statement which, as a minimum, should:
    1. Provide sufficient detail proportionate to the significance and the level of impact on the heritage asset including its setting;
    2. Describe and assess the significance of the asset and/ or its setting to determine its architectural, historic, artistic or archaeological interest;
    3. Identify the impact of the development on the special character of the asset, including any cumulative impacts;
    4. Provide clear and convincing justification for any harm to, or loss of, the significance of a designated heritage asset, from its alteration or destruction, or from development within its setting; and
    5. Agree the mitigation of the impacts on the significance of the heritage assets, including their fabric, their setting, their amenity value and arrangements for reinstatement.

Justification

(1)8.77. Within Nottinghamshire and Nottingham there are thousands of designated and non- designated heritage assets, including archaeological sites and features as well as buildings and sites on local lists of heritage assets. Together these contribute to the Plan area's unique local identity and sense of character. It is therefore important to conserve and enhance these assets in a manner appropriate to their significance. The Council has a duty to protect, conserve and enhance the significance, character and appearances of the area's historic environment when carrying out its statutory functions and through the planning system.

(1)8.78. Waste development proposals can potentially impact, directly or indirectly, heritage assets and their settings. Impacts can range from the direct loss of a heritage asset to proposals which change direction or flow of water courses and flooding which may affect below ground archaeology. Whilst visual impacts are often the most obvious effect on an asset's setting, new development and associated works, such as vehicle movements, can also change how we experience the historic environment through noise, smell, dust and vibrations, especially if there are multiple developments occurring within the vicinity at the same time. Cumulative impacts are therefore also important to consider as detailed in Policy DM10.

8.79. National policy recognises the importance of avoiding and minimising the harm to the significance of designated and non-designated heritage assets and their settings and requires a proportionate response relative to the significance of the heritage asset(s). The significance is the value of a heritage asset to this and future generations because of its heritage interest. The interest may be archaeological, architectural, artistic or historic. Significance derives not only from a heritage asset's physical presence, but also from its setting. To be able to understand potential impacts of proposed development on a heritage asset(s)and their setting, its significance and the impact the proposed development makes to the significance, must be understood.

8.80. The NPPF states that, when considering the impact of a proposed development on the significance of a designated heritage asset, 'great weight should be given to the asset's conservation. The more important the asset, the greater the weight should be.

8.81. For any harm to a designated heritage asset, clear and convincing justification for the waste development will be needed. Substantial harm to or loss of:

  • grade II listed buildings, or grade II registered parks or gardens, should be exceptional.
  • assets of the highest significance, notably scheduled monuments, protected wreck sites, registered battlefields, grade I and II* listed buildings, grade I and II* registered parks and gardens, and World Heritage Sites, should be wholly exceptional

8.82. Where a proposed development will lead to substantial harm to or total loss of significance of a designated heritage asset the NPPF states that permission should be refused unless it can be demonstrated that the substantial harm or loss is necessary to achieve substantial public benefits that outweigh that harm or loss, or all of the following apply:

  • The nature of the heritage asset prevents all reasonable use of the site; and
  • No viable use of the heritage asset can be found in the medium term through appropriate marketing that will enable its conservation; and
  • Conservation by grant-funding or some form of not for profit, charitable or public ownership is demonstrably not possible; and
  • The harm or loss is outweighed by the benefit of bringing the site back into use.

8.83. Where the level of harm to the significance will be less than substantial harm, then the harm will be weighed against the public benefits of the proposal, including, where appropriate, securing the assets optimum viable use.

8.84. As it is the degree of harm on the asset's significance rather than the scale of development that determines the level of harm, even minor works can be classified as substantial harm.

8.85. Public benefits can be anything that delivers social, economic or environmental objectives as described in paragraph 8 of the NPPF. In the context of this Plan, the provision of waste management facilities which help meet forecast needs as identified in the Waste Needs Assessment would be considered a public benefit.

8.86. For proposals which directly or indirectly affect non-designated heritage assets, a balanced judgement will be required having regard to the scale of any harm or loss and the significance of the heritage asset.

8.87. Where proposals would result in the total or part loss of a heritage asset, applicants for waste proposals will be required to record and advance understanding of the significance of the heritage asset in a manner appropriate to its importance, with this made available to the public. The information should be updated to the Historic Environment Record.

8.88. To enable the Councils to make informed assessments and decisions on applications that may impact on the historic environment, adequate information is required from applicants within a heritage statement. Heritage statements should, as a minimum, include detail of the significance of the heritage asset affected, with the historic environment record consulted as a minimum, and identify the impacts of the proposed waste development on the asset, including any cumulative impacts. For designated assets, as detailed above the statement will need to include clear and convincing justification for any harm, or loss of, the significance of a heritage asset (from its alteration or destruction, or from development within its setting). The level of detail within any assessment, where one is required, should be proportionate to the importance of the heritage asset, the size of the development and the level of its impact on the heritage asset including its setting.

(1)8.89. Where an application site includes, or is considered to have the potential to include, heritage assets with archaeological interest then a desk-based assessment will be required followed by a field evaluation where appropriate. Proposals will also need to ensure satisfactory measures are incorporated. The need for preservation in-situ of other sites and remains will need to be assessed against their importance and the impact that their loss would have upon the overall archaeological resource in Nottinghamshire and Nottingham. Although the preservation of archaeological sites is a primary objective, it is clearly impracticable to preserve them all. Equally sites should not be destroyed without careful consideration and appropriate mitigation.

(1)8.90. Where preservation in-situ is not feasible, sites need to be surveyed, excavated, or otherwise appropriately recorded. These provisions can only be assessed after the archaeological characteristics of proposed development sites have been evaluated. An appropriate scheme of treatment is required to be agreed with the relevant Council prior to any development taking place.

8.91. It is strongly advised that assessments, including Heritage Statements and Archaeological Evaluations, are compiled by a appropriately experienced professional consultant or contractor to ensure that an appropriate statement is submitted.

8.92. Within any assessment the applicant should also demonstrate how consideration of the asset and setting has influenced the development of the proposal to minimise and mitigate any identified impacts. Through good design and consideration of the local historic environment, proposals can seek to minimise any harm and should where possible, enhance the historic environment. Early consultation with the local planning authority heritage officers is recommended to help inform proposals and mitigations and so demonstrate the historic asset has been considered through the design of the waste facility. Historic England also can be contacted for pre-application services.

This policy helps to meet the following objectives:

SO4 – The Environment, SO5 – Community, Health and Wellbeing

DM7- Flood Risk and Water Resources

Introduction

8.93. Water is essential for both humans and wildlife and so it is important to protect both ground and surface water resources and, where possible, enhance water quality. Waste facilities have the potential to contaminate water resources if appropriate mitigations are not in place. For example, leachate from a disposal site could potentially contaminate aquifers or run off from sites, particularly if the site is flooded. This may contain contaminates which then enter surface water resources, such as rivers, canals and lakes.

8.94. It is therefore important that waste facilities are designed, managed and located in suitable areas to ensure they have no adverse impacts on the quality, quantity and flow of surface and groundwater.

(2)DM7 - Flood Risk and Water Resources

Flood Risk

  1. Proposals for waste management facilities will be supported where they are located in low flood risk areas. Where this is not possible and proposals are within an area with a known risk of flooding, including potential risk in the future, they will need to demonstrate the Sequential Test has been applied and a Flood Risk Assessment and Exception Test undertaken where required.
     
  2. Proposals for waste management facilities will be supported where it can be demonstrated there will be no unacceptable impact on the integrity and function of floodplains and there is no increased risk of flooding on the site or elsewhere.
     
  3. Proposals should also, where appropriate, include Sustainable Drainage Systems (SuDs), incorporating rainwater harvesting, to manage surface water run-off

Water Resources

  1. Proposals for waste management facilities will be supported where it can be demonstrated that there will be no unacceptable impacts on the quantity and quality of water resources, including groundwater and surface water, taking account of Source Protection Zones, the status of surface watercourses and waterbodies and groundwater bodies. Where possible, proposals should include measures to enhance water quality.
     
  2. For landfill and landraising schemes, proposals will need to demonstrate the ground / geological conditions are suitable.

Justification

Flood Risk

8.95. Proposals for waste facilities must ensure the risk of flooding, from all sources, has been appropriately considered and addressed to ensure the facility is safe throughout its lifetime and can operate without posing a risk to water resources and water bodies and not increase flood risk on site or elsewhere.

8.96. The responsibility of managing flood risk lies with both the Local Lead Flood Authority (LLFA), in this case Nottinghamshire County Council and Nottingham City Council, and the Environment Agency. The Councils are responsible for managing the risk of flooding from surface water and ground water and managing ordinary water courses whilst the Environment Agency has a specific responsibility to manage flood risk from main rivers and the sea. Both the LLFA and Environment Agency should be consulted early on within the application stages.

8.97. Proposals for waste management facilities should be located in areas with low flood risk, where this is not possible the applicant will need to undertake a Sequential Test to demonstrate there are no suitable alternative sites.

8.98. Applications will also need to be accompanied by a site-specific flood risk assessment if:

  • It is located in Flood Zone 1 and over 1 hectare
  • In Flood Zone 2 or 3
  • In an area identified as having critical drainage issues
  • It has an increased flood risk in the future, taking climate change into account
  • It is subject to other sources of flooding and the proposed development is a more vulnerable use

8.99. An exception test may also be required following the Sequential Test, this is dependent upon the flood risk vulnerability classification of the proposed development and what flood zone the proposal lies in. As outlined within the Planning Practice Guidance and summarised within Table 13 below, different waste facilities have different vulnerability classifications and so the flood zone compatibility of waste facilities varies.

Table 13. - Vulnerability classification and compatibility for different types of waste facilities.

Type of Waste Facility

Flood Risk Vulnerability Classification

Flood Zone Compatibility

Waste Water Treatment

Essential Infrastructure

Appropriate in Flood Zones 1, 2, 3a+ and 3b*

Waste treatment (except landfill* and hazardous waste facilities)

Less Vulnerable

Appropriate in Flood Zones 1, 2 and 3a

Hazardous Waste Facilities

More Vulnerable

Appropriate in Flood Zones 1, 2 and 3a*

Landfill

More Vulnerable

Appropriate in Flood Zones 1, 2 and 3a*

+ Should be designed and constructed to remain operational and safe in times of flood

*An exception test will need to be passed with the proposal designed and constructed to: Remain operational and safe for users in times of flood; Result in no net loss of floodplain storage and; Not impede water flow and not increase flood risk elsewhere

8.100. For an exception test to be passed, the proposed development will need to demonstrate that both:

  • The development would provide wider sustainability benefits to the community that outweigh the flood risk. Any identified sustainability benefits will need to be balanced against any associated flood risks, informed by the site-specific flood risk assessment; and
  • The development will be safe for its lifetime taking account of the vulnerability of its users, without increasing flood risk elsewhere, and, where possible, will reduce flood risk overall. Flood risk could be reduced by using green infrastructure within the layout of the development or providing Sustainable Drainage Systems or providing or contributing to flood risk management infrastructure which would also benefit the existing community.

8.101. Following the site-specific flood risk assessment, sequential and exception test where required, permission should only be granted in areas at risk of flooding where it can be demonstrated that:

  • The most vulnerable part of the development is located in areas of the lowest flood risk within the site, unless there are overriding reasons to prefer a different location
  • The development is appropriately flood resistant and resilient
  • It incorporates SuDs, unless there is clear evidence this would be inappropriate
  • Any residual risk can be safely managed and
  • Safe access and escape routes are included where appropriate, as part of an agreed emergency plan

8.102. SuDs should also be incorporated into proposals for waste facilities, even where the risk of flooding is low, as they help to control surface water runoff and so not only can they reduce the causes and impacts of flooding, but they also remove pollutants and so can improve water quality as well. Examples of SuDs include permeable pavements, rain gardens, bioretention basins, green roofs and swales. Rainwater harvesting could also be incorporated into SuDs. Any SuDs will need to be proactively maintained to ensure they remain functional for their lifetime.

Water Resources

8.103. Proposals for waste management facilities will need to ensure the protection, and where possible, the enhancement of surface and ground water resources and quality as well as consider how the use of water resources can be minimised where possible.

8.104. The Environment Agency is the main authority for safeguarding water resources; it seeks to improve and protect inland and coastal waters, ensuring sustainable use of natural water resources, creating better habitats and other factors that help to improve quality of life. The Environment Agency publishes information on groundwater vulnerability and the location of source protection zones for water supply as well as the status of watercourses and water bodies.

8.105. The Environment Agency's Approach to Groundwater Protection uses aquifer designations which are consistent with the Water Framework Directive. This reflects the importance of aquifers in terms of groundwater as a resource and also their role in supporting surface water flows and wetland ecosystems. A key aim of the Water Framework Directive is to prevent deterioration in the status of water bodies, improve their ecological and chemical status and prevent further pollution.

8.106. Contaminating ground water resources, particularly aquifers which are used for drinking water, is perhaps the most serious pollution threat from waste management facilities, particularly from disposal sites. Proposals for landfill and landraising facilities will therefore need to demonstrate they have considered the geological conditions and the behaviour of surface and ground water and put appropriate mitigations in place where required. For non-inert disposal sites, these should not be located in source protection zones.

8.107. The risk of contaminating surface water resources from waste facilities is also high if surface water is not managed appropriately. Proposals for waste management facilities therefore should:

  • Direct surface water from all non-waste operational areas, such as roofs and roads, towards a sustainable surface water outfall or to be used for rainwater harvesting where possible, with this water being treated through the appropriate number of treatment processes to ensure pollution is not caused or flood risk increased
  • Cover waste handling/storage areas to prevent excess rainwater entering the foul sewage system where possible
  • Have suitable mitigation/ attenuation of storm flows where the site is connected to the foul/ combined sewer where these are not separated

8.108. Applicants therefore are recommended to engage with the Environment Agency and LLFA, Nottinghamshire County Council or Nottingham City Council for their respective administrative areas, at the earliest opportunity within the application process to ensure they have considered ground and surface water resources. Early consultation will also help identify appropriate and adequate mitigations which may be required.

8.109. To further protect aquifers, especially those with poor status, under the Water Framework Directive further abstraction should be limited to prevent further deterioration. Proposals then should seek to reduce water consumption and ensure water resources are used as efficiently as possible. This could include measures such as harvesting rainwater and grey water for wheel washing and dust suppression as well as using SuDs, which can help improve water quality by removing pollutants as well as reducing flood risk.

This policy helps to meet the following objectives:

SO2 – Climate Change, SO4- The Environment

DM8- Public Access

Introduction

8.110. Nottinghamshire is a largely rural County and has nearly 2,800km of routes providing access into the countryside for walking, cycling and horse riding and Nottingham City has a total of 84km of public access routes.

8.111. The Rights of Way network also provides vital links within the City and between towns and villages and is increasingly being used as a route to school, work and shops.

8.112. The size and location of a waste facility development can have significant direct or indirect impacts on the rights of way network and its users. However, it can also provide opportunities to improve and extend existing infrastructure and enable both wider enjoyment of the countryside and access to services and facilities.

8.113. The public rights of way network is both an important recreational resource and a sustainable transport option. Local authorities have a statutory duty to protect these and therefore, new developments should not adversely affect the integrity of the established rights of way network. There may, however, be circumstances where, in the interests of providing for sustainable waste developments, disruption of a public right of way is unavoidable. In such cases, mitigation would be sought, such as diverting the route in a satisfactory manner, creating an alternative route and/or providing for additional routes to increase access opportunities. Mitigation could also ensure an existing route does not suffer from reduced amenity.

(1)DM8 – Public Access

Proposals for waste development will be supported where it can be demonstrated this will not have an unacceptable impact on the existing rights of way network and its users. Where this is not possible, satisfactory proposals for temporary or permanent diversions, which are of at least an equivalent interest or quality, must be provided and improvements and enhancements to the rights of way network will be sought where practical.

Justification

8.114. National guidance states that policies should protect and enhance public rights of way and access. Opportunities to provide better facilities for users, such as adding links to the existing rights of way, should be sought. Where appropriate, crossing points will be required to ensure that the existing rights of way network is not compromised during development. Proposals for new rights of way will need to consider how they can best link into the existing rights of way network. All proposals for new or improved rights of way should also cater for the needs of people with mobility problems and other disabilities and comply with the requirements of the Equality Act 2010.

8.115. There are parts of Nottinghamshire and Nottingham City that suffer from a poor-quality environment and a lack of accessible green space. Therefore, efforts to improve public rights of way should be targeted to help address such deficiencies as well as providing new infrastructure.

8.116. Reference should be made to the Nottinghamshire County Council Rights of Way Improvement Plan and the Nottingham City Rights of Way Improvement Plan 2 and advice sought from the County and City Council's rights of way officers regarding proposed temporary or permanent diversions and the opportunities for future improvements in the area.

8.117. Such consultation on any public right of way affected by a proposed waste development should take place at the earliest possible stage. The statutory process for footpath diversion or closure is separate from the planning process and as such delays or failures to secure any required amendments to the rights of way network could affect the implementation of future waste facilities development.

8.118. Enhancements to the rights of way network will be secured through legal agreements rather than planning conditions to ensure that the enhanced rights of way are available in perpetuity. Similarly, permissive paths will not be considered for temporary or permanent diversions to an existing definitive right of way.

This policy helps to meet the following objectives:

SO4 – The Environment, SO5 – Community, Health and Wellbeing

DM9- Planning Obligations

Introduction

8.119. All waste development proposals could give rise to issues such as; highways, flood risk, and archaeological and ecological impact, as well as physical impacts on the landscape, impacts on landscape character and visual impacts. There are many areas where the treatment of waste could impact on local communities. In order to ensure that a balance is struck between society's requirement for waste infrastructure and the need to protect the local environment and residential amenity, measures will be secured through legal agreements associated with planning permissions for waste developments.

8.120. To achieve sustainable development, additional planning requirements may be imposed to make a proposed development acceptable. The coordinated delivery of adequately funded infrastructure at the right time and in the right place is key to ensuring that local services, facilities and the transport network can accommodate any additional demand arising from new waste facility developments.

(1)DM9 - Planning Obligations

Where appropriate and necessary, the County and City Councils will seek to negotiate planning obligations as measures for controlling waste facilities and mitigating any negative impacts to secure sustainable development objectives which cannot be achieved by the use of planning conditions.

Justification

8.121. Planning obligations (also known as Section 106 agreements) are legal agreements made between local authorities, developers and landowners which can be attached to a planning permission to make acceptable development which would otherwise be considered unacceptable in planning terms. The obligations set out in Section 106 agreements apply to the person or organisation that enters into the agreement, and any subsequent owner of the land to which the planning permission relates. This is something that any future owners will need to take in to account.

8.122. The NPPF provides Government guidance on the use of planning obligations. It contains three tests that planning obligations must meet. They must be:

  • Necessary to make the proposed development acceptable in planning terms
  • Directly related to the proposed development
  • Fairly and reasonably related in scale and kind to the proposed development.

8.123. The County Council has a Developer Contribution Strategy, and Nottingham City Council has two adopted policies, the Nottingham City Aligned Core Strategy Policy 19: Developer Contributions and the LAPP Policy IN4: Developer Contributions policy which all set out circumstances where planning obligations may be sought and include:

  • Highway improvement and reinstatement works, lorry routeing arrangements, off-site highway safety works
  • Off-site provision of landscaping, screening, noise attenuation measures etc.
  • Off-site monitoring of noise, dust, groundwater, landfill gas migration – provision of leachate/landfill gas control measures
  • Provision for extended aftercare
  • Enhancements of the historic environment
  • Archaeological consultants and contractors for investigation, recording, analysing, archiving and reporting on archaeological structure or remain
  • Long term management of restored sites
  • Habitat creation, enhancement and protection
  • Safeguarding protected species and species of local biodiversity interest
  • Transfer of land ownership and associated management provisions
  • Meet the reasonable costs of new infrastructure or services, employment and training:
  • Provision of open space where appropriate
  • Drainage and flood protection

8.124. Applicants are advised to check the above documents when applying for planning permission as Nottinghamshire County Council and Nottingham City Council both have varying requirements in terms of planning obligations.

8.125. The nature and scale of obligation requirements from a development will reflect:

  • The nature and impact the development has upon strategic, local and on-site needs and requirements
  • Current infrastructure and whether the development can be accommodated by the existing provision
  • How the potential impacts of a development can be mitigated
  • Viability. In considering issues of viability the Councils will have regard to the quality and value of a scheme in the context of how the development contributed towards the vision, objectives and policies for the area.

8.126. Whether obligations will be 'in kind' (where the developer builds or directly provides the infrastructure), by means of financial payments or a combination of both will depend on the nature and circumstances of the infrastructure requirement. The NPPF sets out that development identified in the Local Plan should not be subject to such a scale of obligations and policy burdens that their ability to be developed viably is threatened. It emphasises that developers and landowners should receive a competitive return to enable the development to be delivered.

This policy helps to meet the following objectives:

SO1- Meet our future needs, SO2 – Climate Change, SO3– Strengthen Our Economy, SO4 – The Environment SO5 – Community, Health and Wellbeing, SO6 – Sustainable Transport and SO7- High quality design and operation

DM10- Cumulative Impacts of Development

Introduction

8.127. The cumulative impact of several waste management operations either on one site or in close proximity to each other may be a factor that needs to be assessed, as well as the effects of these types of developments in conjunction with other non-waste developments in an area. The impacts, both real and perceived, of a concentration of waste management facilities close to a community or communities could have a detrimental impact on local amenity, health, quality of life and the wider environment and landscape character including visual character.

8.128. Adverse cumulative impacts include increased levels of noise, odour and artificial lighting. The local highway network could also be affected by increased HGV movements with potential hazards related to road safety.

(3)DM10 - The Cumulative Impact of Development

Proposals for waste management development will be supported where it can be demonstrated that there are no unacceptable cumulative impacts on the environment, health or on the amenity of a local community.

Justification

8.129. National policy emphasises the need for cumulative impacts from multiple impacts from individual site and/or a number of sites in a locality to be taken into account.

8.130. The capacity of a local area to accommodate waste management facilities depends upon the proximity of existing development, the type of facility proposed, access to the site and operational issues such as noise, dust, odour and hours of opening.

8.131. A stage may be reached whereby it is the cumulative rather than the individual impact of a proposal that renders it environmentally unacceptable. Depending on local circumstances, there may also be a need to consider whether there are likely to be cumulative impacts resulting from a proposed waste management facility in combination with other existing or proposed non-waste related development.

(1)8.132. This policy seeks to ensure that the impacts of a waste proposal are considered in conjunction with the impacts of all existing development and that cumulative impact on the natural and historic environment of an area, highway safety, health or on the amenity of a local community or communities are fully addressed.

This policy helps to meet the following objectives:

SO4– The Environment, SO5– Community, Health and Wellbeing

DM11- Airfield Safeguarding

Introduction

8.133. As detailed within the aerodrome safeguarding procedure (DfT/ODPM Circular 1/2003), Airfield Safeguarding Areas are a 13km/8-mile radius established around aerodromes, both civil and military, and their associated buildings to ensure aviation safety.

8.134. Waste development proposals can pose a risk to aviation safety, with the main risk from facilities that are likely to attract birds which could increase the risk of bird strike. Any waste development proposals then that falls within an Airfield Safeguarding Area will require consultation with owners or operators of the relevant airfields to consider potential hazards to aircraft or radio operations and ensure any risks are adequately mitigated.

DM11 - Airfield Safeguarding

Proposals for waste development within Airfield Safeguarding areas will be supported where it can be demonstrated that the proposed development during the construction, operational and, where relevant, restoration and after use phases, will not result in any unacceptable adverse impacts on aviation safety.

Justification

8.135. As shown on Plan 2, there are ten licenced Airfield Safeguarding Zones for airports and Military of Defence (MoD) sites in the plan area:

  • East Midlands Airport
  • Gamston (Retford) Airport
  • Netherthorpe Airfield
  • Nottingham City Airport
  • Robin Hood Airport Doncaster Sheffield
  • RAF Barkston Heath MoD Aerodrome
  • RAF Cranwell MoD Aerodrome
  • RAF Scampton MoD Aerodrome
  • RAF Syerston MoD Aerodrome
  • RAF Waddington MoD Aerodrome

8.136. Other, non-licenced, aerodromes may be safeguarded by privately agreed consultation with the Local Planning Authority. This is called 'unofficial' safeguarding and is not obligatory under Statutory Direction. However, the Councils acknowledges the Governments advice that 'aerodrome owners should take steps to safeguard their operations' and as such Policy DM11 will also apply to these 'unofficial' safeguarded areas as recorded by Local Planning Authorities. Any new safeguarding areas established during the plan period will also be safeguarded.

8.137. As detailed in the NPPW, the main risk to aviation safety is that waste facilities can, if not managed appropriately, attract birds which could lead to an increased risk of bird strike to aircraft. Facilities that handle, compact, treat or dispose of household or commercial waste are more likely to attract birds, in particular Landfill sites that accept putrescible waste. Other infrastructure associated with facilities can also attract birds, such as those with flat roofs, ledges and gantries as well as sites that create or enhance wet areas as part of landscaping or for restoration and after use.

8.138. Other hazards that waste proposals may pose to aviation safety include:

  • Glare and dazzling from lighting and reflective materials used on site
  • Visual impact from tall buildings and structures, including any cranes present during the construction phase
  • Air turbulence created from thermal plumes and venting and flaring of gas
  • Radio interference if radio communication is used within the waste facility itself

8.139. Any waste development proposals within Airfield Safeguarding areas will therefore need to consider within their application the risks they may pose to aviation safety, including potential risks during the construction, operational and, where relevant, the restoration and after use phases.

8.140. Early engagement with the Councils and aerodrome operators is encouraged so risks can be identified and addressed through design and adequate mitigations early on within the proposal to ensure the safe operation of aircraft.

This policy helps to meet the following objectives:

SO5- Community, Health and Wellbeing, SO7- High quality design and operation

Plan 2 – Airfield Safeguarding Areas

Map marked with the following airfields: Robin Hood Airfield, Netherthorpe Airfield, RAF Scramptop MoD Aerodrome, Retford (Gamston) Airport, RAF Waddington MoD Aerodrome, RAF Syserston MoD Aerodrome, RAF Cranwell MoD Aerodrome, RAF Barkston Heath MoD Aerodrome, Nottingham City Airport, East Midlands Airport

DM12- Highway Safety and Vehicle Movements/ Routeing

Introduction

8.141. The Plan seeks under Policy SP6 for waste development proposals to use alternative sustainable modes of transport, such as rail, water, or pipeline. It is though recognised that waste facilities predominantly use road to transport waste and so it is important to ensure that proposals consider highway safety and that vehicle movements do not have an unacceptable impact on the local environment and amenity. The needs of all road users, pedestrians, cyclists and people with disabilities, must be at the forefront of any considerations.

(4)DM12 - Highway Safety and Vehicle Movements/Routeing

  1. Proposals for waste management facilities where sustainable alternative modes of transporting waste are not viable or practical will be supported where it can be demonstrated that:
    1. The highway network including any necessary improvements can satisfactorily and safely accommodate the vehicle movements, including peaks in vehicle movements, likely to be generated.
    2. The vehicle movements likely to be generated would not cause an unacceptable impact on the environment and/or disturbance to local amenity.
    3. Measures have been put in place to minimise the impact of additional vehicle movements, for example directional signage, wheel washing, street cleansing, sheeting of loads.
    4. Where appropriate, adequate vehicle routeing schemes have been put in place to minimise the impact of traffic on local communities.
    5. Adequate provision has been provided for safe vehicle manoeuvring and loading along with sufficient vehicle parking and EV charging points.

Justification

8.142. Most waste is transported via the existing road network due to the flexibility and distance that most waste is carried. This can cause an increase in the level of HGV traffic on the local and wider road networks in the vicinity of waste processing facilities. It is important that the impact of this traffic is minimised and it shown that these additional vehicle movements can be safely accommodated and they do not cause an unacceptable impact on the environment and/or local amenity. This can be done through several different measures which may be implemented through planning conditions and can include:

  • strategic signage for lorry movements.
  • sheeting of lorries.
  • highway improvements.
  • hours of working / opening.
  • traffic regulation orders.
  • noise attenuation of reversing bleepers, plant and equipment.
  • private haul roads.
  • road safety improvements.
  • traffic management arrangements, including off peak movements.
  • providing wheel wash facilities to prevent materials, such as mud, contaminating public highways.

8.143. National Highways is responsible for the strategic road network which includes trunk roads and Motorways. In the Plan Area National Highways is therefore responsible for the M1, A1, A46, A52 and the A453. They provide policy advice on other transport issues concerning their function, including the consideration of planning applications.

8.144. Nottinghamshire County Council and Nottingham City Council are the Local Highway Authority for their respective area and are responsible for all roads, except those above, and are responsible for the implementation of their Local Transport Plans. As the Local Highway Authorities, the Councils will require proposals to be accompanied by a Transport Assessment (TA) or Transport Statement (TS). Any such supporting documents must accord with current standards and local guidance. It is recommended early discussion is held with officers at the relevant Council or National Highways where applicable to discuss any transport issues.

8.145. In certain circumstances, where a significant amount of movement is generated a Travel Plan may also be required. Travel plans should seek to use sustainable modes of transport for both the movement of goods, as detailed further in Policy SP6, and people.

8.146. Where a specific highways impact from the development is identified that requires mitigation, the Councils will either seek developer contributions or use planning conditions to enable the necessary works to be completed. Any highways work will need to be designed to meet the relevant Councils Highways Design Guide.

8.147. Lorry routeing can be a major consideration in assessing the acceptability of a waste proposal. Whilst a reasonable route may exist, which the operator may well be willing to use, it may be necessary to control routeing through planning conditions or in most instances through a legally binding agreements (known as planning obligations or Section 106 Agreements – see DM9 for more information) between the applicant and the Council.

8.148. To enable safe movement onto the highway and to prevent further impacts, development proposals should design sites that enable sufficient space for the safe manoeuvring of vehicles, loading/ unloading and parking, for both HGV's and private vehicles as well as access for emergency services. Charging points for electrical vehicles should also be available and considered in any parking layout.

This policy helps to meet the following Strategic Objectives:

SO4- The environment, SO5- Community, Health and Wellbeing, SO6- Sustainable Transport and SO7- High quality design and operation


[7] De-pollution of end-of-life vehicles (.i.e. removal of fuel, oil, gases etc.) must be carried out within a building.

[8] Crushing and screening of construction and demolition waste (soils, aggregate etc.) is often carried out on site as part of the construction/demolition project. This does not normally require specific planning permission.

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