Views sought on North Yorkshire and York minerals and waste plan

This story was published 21 July 2021

Final representations are being sought on a plan that will become the key reference for minerals and waste planning decisions in North Yorkshire and York up to 2030.

Minerals and waste joint plan examination

The Minerals and Waste Joint Plan, developed over several years by ourselves, City of York Council and the North York Moors National Park Authority, is now reaching its final stages before adoption.

After extensive public consultation, a Government Inspector examined the draft plan in public in 2018. Following the Inspector’s recommendations, further work has been done to prepare main modifications to the plan. These update and strengthen some policies, incorporate legislative changes and add further and revised sites to the plan.

The plan includes robust protection for residents and the environment to guide future planning applications for developments such as new or extended quarries and new waste management facilities, such as recycling and treatment centres. Measures include an extended buffer zone to protect residential locations as well as environmentally important places, such as the National Park, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, nature conservation areas and important historic sites.

County Councillor Andrew Lee, Executive Member for Planning, said: “Once adopted, this plan will be central to guiding future minerals and waste planning decisions. It will strengthen protection of the world class environment and landscape of our county, the health and wellbeing of residents and the interests of businesses.”

Cllr Andrew Waller, Executive Member for Planning at City of York Council, said: “It’s really important that we have appropriate scrutiny at a local level for the emerging Waste and Minerals Plan position. This is particularly the case for forms of development such as ‘fracking’, which have the potential to give rise to adverse impact on local communities and create environmental problems.

“We believe the planning process and the draft Mineral and Waste Joint Plan already provides a well-established regulatory system for giving proper and public input to planning issues associated with shale gas (fracking), including the right to appeal for any applicant who wishes to challenge decisions made by the council.

“Given the contentious nature of fracking, local communities should be able to feedback on whether this type of development takes place, so we encourage everyone to have their say on what happens in the area where they live through this consultation. We must have the ability to protect York’s historic character, its special setting and proposed green belt. Progressing the plan is an integral part of how we will do this. It will ensure we have the planning policies in place for minerals and waste development until 2030.”

Rob Smith, Senior Minerals Planner at the North York Moors National Park Authority, said: “The progress made on the minerals and waste plan is welcomed. When finalised, the new plan will complement the recently adopted local plan for the North York Moors National Park, helping to ensure that our local communities, visitors and the special qualities of the National Park are given careful protection from any harmful effects of minerals and waste development.”

This engagement on proposed main modifications to the plan, which begins on 21 July, is not an opportunity to repeat previous representations or to raise new issues. Comments should relate solely to whether the proposed main modifications comply with legal requirements and soundness, that is whether they have been positively prepared, and are justified, effective and consistent with national policy.

Everyone who has made representations in the past – from parish councils to environmental organisations, the minerals and waste industry and individuals – will be contacted and invited to comment on the main modifications. More information about the Minerals and waste joint plan examination.

All responses must be received by 5pm on Wednesday, 15 September, 2021.

This will be the final stage of consultation. All duly made comments received will be forwarded to the Inspector, who will take them into account when writing her report. Subject to the Inspector’s report, the final stage will be the adoption of the plan as an official policy document, which could happen before the end of this year.