CLG consultation: Permitted development rights
ACE have submitted a written response to the Department of Communities and Local Government consultation: “Permitted development rights for small scale renewable and low carbon energy technologies, and electric vehicle charging infrastructure”
ACE welcomes the government’s decision to grant permitted development rights to microgeneration technologies and electric vehicle charging points. We believe that electricity and heat from microgeneration and the decarbonisation of transport will have a significant part to play in meeting carbon reduction targets in the UK.
The government says that the purpose of the proposed changes to the planning system is to increase the number of installations of microgeneration technologies. If this is the ultimate goal then further measures could also be taken. In some cases the proposed changes still leave only limited possibilities for permitted technologies and the thresholds could be relaxed further without leading to additional noise or visual disturbances.
For instance one of the biggest problems to be tackled in the UK housing stock is the efficient heating of solid-wall and off-gas properties. Ground-source and air-source heat pumps are considered to be an effective solution, however under the current proposals a large block of flats might be limited to a single 1-cubic-metre pump, the effect of which will be negligible. In addition, in some cases the size of the property will be relevant in choosing how many wind turbines would be appropriate, but no reference has been made in the proposals as to how the size of the property affects the thresholds.
This consultation is a step in the right direction, however if the government is serious about increasing the uptake of microgeneration by removing any potential cost or administrative barriers, then we would like to see more research done into what the major barriers are, and what can be done to lessen their impact.
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