5 September 2023
On the 5th September, the government is making new changes that will empower communities to advance onshore wind projects, leading to quicker generation of renewable energy and reduced energy bills for supportive residents.
The government has streamlined planning regulations, granting local communities a more influential role in determining the fate of onshore wind projects. This move aims to foster electricity cost savings and bolster national energy security.
These measures encompass a broader range of methods for identifying suitable locations, including community-driven initiatives, and expediting the site allocation process through alternatives to the local planning process. This approach ensures that the entire community has a voice, shifting the focus from a minority of objectors to a majority of supporters, thereby opening the door to more community-supported onshore wind projects.
Importantly, local policies regarding onshore wind will continue to be decided by elected local councillors, who are accountable to their constituents. Projects will move forward when they can demonstrate local support and address planning concerns raised by the community.
Furthermore, communities endorsing local wind farms could stand to benefit from reduced energy costs, thanks to proposals designed to incentivize more projects. The government has sought input on measures to enhance the benefits and rewards for communities supporting onshore wind farms and will unveil the next steps in this process later this Autumn.
In a post on Gov.UK on the 5th September, the Government confirmed that:
- Communities are able to bring forward proposals for onshore wind – planning policy will be changed to make clear onshore wind developments can be identified in several ways rather than through local plans. This includes through Local Development Orders and Community Right to Build Orders.
- Councils should consider the views of the whole community, rather than a small minority, when considering a planning application. This includes addressing the planning impact of onshore wind projects as identified by local communities.
If you have any queries regarding the updated NPPF, or any other planning matters, please use the form below to contact our team today.