Skip to main content

Planning: Renewable Energy

Volume 471: debated on Thursday 31 January 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether under proposed changes to the Merton Rule in the new Planning Policy Statement on Climate Change, the developer would have to demonstrate that they could not achieve the 10 per cent. target on-site before the new proposed off-site rule applied; and what definitions her Department uses of off-site in these circumstances. (165247)

[holding answer 19 November 2007]: The new planning policy statement (PPS) on climate change will boost the use of local renewable and low carbon energy in new development. The PPS sets out our ‘Merton-Plus’ approach. This (like existing Merton rules) expects a council-wide target and, additionally, tailored targets for sites where there is greater potential for using decentralised energy to supply new development. These targets should be flexible enough to consider community schemes (for example, wind turbines or CHP schemes serving more than one site) as well as building specific technologies. When there are clear carbon savings to be had from local energy sources, they should not be subject to a requirement for on-site options to be tested before they can be considered.

Explanations of the terms used in the PPS are set out in its glossary. This makes it clear that decentralised energy is energy supplied from “local renewable and local low-carbon sources (i.e. on-site and near-site, but not remote off-site)”.