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Housing: Opencast Mining

Volume 465: debated on Tuesday 23 October 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what representations her Department has received calling for buffer zones between domestic dwellings and opencast mines; and if she will make a statement. (157659)

I am aware of two representations to the Department which called for buffer zones between domestic dwellings and opencast mines.

The Government have no plans to introduce a planning policy recommending uniform buffer zones around opencast mining sites in England. It considers that the interests of the occupants of neighbouring properties, and the environment, are better served by the present practice of considering the specific impacts of individual mining schemes in the light of all the local relevant circumstances, as part of the preparation of an environmental impact assessment for an application for planning permission.