The RTPI has published two new documents, one to help planners tackle climate change through the strategic use of policy and legislation, the other to help them deliver renewable energy projects by highlighting good practice across the UK.
The new guide was developed jointly with the Town and Country Planning Association.
Launched at a Parliamentary event today, it provides an overview of policy and legislation which can be used to address climate change at a local level, overcoming the barriers faced by many local authorities in England.
The current National Planning Policy Framework contains ambitious policies on climate change but on-the-ground delivery remains slow, largely because of a lack of practical advice and support to local councils.
Victoria Hills, RTPI Chief Executive, says:
“Planners have a leading role in joining up the dots, from housing and transport to flood risk mitigation and energy, to ensure communities benefit from a holistic approach to tackling climate change. Today’s guidelines will be a valuable resource and should prompt more concerted efforts to tackle this vital issue.”
The RTPI has put together new practice advice to demonstrate how proactive planning can help deliver renewable energy projects on the ground.
This is timely given that the UK’s commitment to reduce carbon emissions is expected to continue post-Brexit, and that renewable energy production is a crucial part of the Government's Industrial Strategy.
It outlines key policy initiatives and highlights good practice case studies throughout England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Through examples like Wales’s first large-scale battery storage scheme, Siemens offshore turbine manufacturing plant in Hull and Scotland’s marine plan, the note shows that at a strategic and local level, planning is vital in identifying suitable developments, empowering key stakeholders, and enabling local communities to deliver affordable renewable energy networks.
Robbie Calvert, RTPI Policy and Networks Adviser, said:
“The UK’s renewable energy industry is a success story that must continue after Brexit. Planning plays a key role in everything from the creation of transmission structures to strategic planning that links investment, employment opportunities and long-term capacity needs. Planners are indispensable to forming public sector networks, striking commercial partnerships and facilitating meaningful community involvement.”