NEWS

Planning for a successful AD project

Published July 4th, 2013

Getting the necessary planning permission can be a major hurdle for an anaerobic digester project but careful design, consultation and communication can help smooth the path.

Speaking at the ‘Planning for Success’ seminar on the second day of UK AD & Biogas 2013, Stephen Locke, head of planning with chartered surveyors Berrys at Shrewsbury, says it pays to take specialist advice from the outset to help avoid a costly planning appeal.

“Local planning authorities are encouraged to have a positive strategy to promote energy from renewable and low carbon sources,” he says. “And they should ‘design their policies to maximise renewable and low carbon energy development while ensuring that adverse impacts are addressed satisfactorily, including cumulative landscape and visual impacts’.”

Preparation is key to a successful passage through the planning process which usually starts with pre-application talks and consultations with planners and other parties before the application is submitted. The decision will then be made by delegation or committee after Environmental Impact Assessment screening and further consultation with the community.

Stephen has these tips for success:

• Site selection is crucial

• Engage early in the process

• Local knowledge is gold dust

• Pre-application and EIA responses are valuable

• Develop relationships – gain trust

• Know your local movers and shakers

• Presentation – vital

• Predict the outcome before it happens

“And finally, keep calm,” he says. “The planning process can seem complicated but if you are careful to cover all eventualities a successful outcome is possible.”

Stephen Locke’s presentation Planning for Success is on Thursday, July 4 in the Green Seminar Theatre from 11.00 – 12.00.

For further details contact Stephen Locke at Berrys on 01743 26706 or email stephen.locke@berrys.uk.com or visit Berrys stand P49 at UK AD & Biogas 2013 at the NEC.

Berrys has offices in Shropshire, Cheshire and Northamptonshire