January 2011

Support for community energy projects

We have just heard that the Energy Saving Trust has some provision left to help communities in this financial year (by end of March 2011). As part of their Green Communities Expert Support Panel they can provide two to three days of support for community organisations.

It may be that you would like help to set up as a ‘social enterprise’ or you may want help with a community renewables scheme.

Have a look at their website http://www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/cafe for more information.

Do remember the support would need to be commissioned, delivered and paid for in this financial year, so time is of the essence!

National Planning Policy Framework: Opportunity to comment

It has come to our attention that the Planning Minister Greg Clark has announced a "review of planning policy, designed to consolidate policy statements, circulars and guidance documents into a single consolidated National Planning Policy Framework."

This will affect planning decisions for many years to come and it is essential that permaculture makes a contribution to the debate, if we want to support local sustainability, low impact developments and a more ecological future. The Permaculture Association will make a response, and is keen to hear your views on what that might be.

They say that the new Framework will be:

* localist in its approach, handing power back to local communities to decide what is right for them
* used as a mechanism for delivering Government objectives only where it is relevant, proportionate and effective to do so and
* user-friendly and accessible, providing clear policies on making robust local and neighbourhood plans and development management decisions

It is important that planning professionals, local authorities, community groups and members of the public have an opportunity to shape the new Framework.

The Minister has invited organisations and individuals to offer their suggestions to the Department on what priorities and policies we might adopt to produce a shorter, more decentralised and less bureaucratic National Planning Policy Framework.

Please send your suggestions, by 28 February 2011, to:

planningframework@communities.gsi.gov.uk

or

Alan Scott
National Planning Policy Framework
Department for Communities and Local Government
Zone 1/H6
Eland House
London SW1E 5DU

http://www.communities.gov.uk/planningandbuilding/planningsystem/plannin...