In March 2014 Planning Practice Guidance (PPG) was launched by the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG). One of the topics covered by the PPG is Air Quality and the PPG explains that whether or not air quality is relevant to a planning decision will depend on the proposed development and its location. Concerns could arise if the development is likely to generate air quality impact in an area where air quality is known to be poor. They could also arise where the development is likely to adversely impact upon the implementation of air quality strategies and action plans and/or lead to a breach of EU legislation.
When deciding whether air quality is relevant to a planning application, considerations include whether the development would:
• Significantly affect traffic in the immediate vicinity of the proposed development site or further afield, for example by generating or increasing traffic congestion; significantly changing traffic volumes, vehicle speed or both; or significantly altering the traffic composition on local roads.
• Introduce new point sources of air pollution for example furnaces; extraction systems (including chimneys) which require approval under pollution control legislation or biomass boilers or biomass-fuelled CHP plant; centralised boilers or CHP plant burning other fuels within or close to an air quality management area or introduce relevant combustion within a Smoke Control Area;
• Expose people to existing sources of air pollutants, for example by building new homes in places with poor air quality.
• Give rise to potentially unacceptable impact (such as dust) during construction for nearby sensitive locations.
• Affect biodiversity.
The PPG states that where there are concerns about air quality, the local planning authority may want to know about:
• the ‘baseline’ local air quality;
• whether the proposed development could significantly change air quality during the construction and operational phases; and/or
• whether there is likely to be a significant increase in the number of people exposed to a problem with air quality.
The PPG advises that air quality assessments should be proportionate to the nature and scale of development proposed and the level of concern about air quality, and because of this are likely to be locationally specific and should be agreed between the local planning authority and applicant before commissioning.
Our Air Quality Services
Miller Goodall Environmental Services Ltd has a proven track record of; • Preparing high-quality reports in support of planning applications
• Working with multi-disciplinary teams to prepare the air quality chapters of full Environmental Statements
• Providing expert witness support for Public Inquiries and Hearings
Projects completed in the last two years include;
• Detailed air quality assessment for a mixed use development – change of use planning application from farm to sports village including a new football ground for AFC Fylde, a warehouse and distribution centre with ancillary office space, retail store, sports science building, a full size outdoor floodlit 3G sports pitch, 3 all-weather floodlit “five a side” pitches, petrol filling station, non-food bulky goods retail use, hotel, pub / restaurant and drive through restaurant.
• Detailed air quality assessments for a range of residential developments
• Screening assessment using DMRB for the extension of a car park for a large office building
• Studies into air quality around various sites which developers have wished to move from one planning use to another during development plan reviews.
• Detailed air quality assessment for a mixed use development incorporating up to 800 dwellings, elderly care provision, a 260 berth canal based marina (with associated chandlery and facilities building), a primary school, a medical centre, local shopping, restaurants, employment uses, a junior cricket pitch, community orchards and allotments, new footpaths/bridleways and public open space.
• Provision of expert evidence in relation to air quality at a Planning Inquiry into the extension of a landfill site in Warrington.
If you would like to discuss how we can help your project, please contact us on 01204 596166 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. To read the Guidance in full visit http://planningguidance.planningportal.gov.uk/