We have extensive experience in undertaking or using a variety of sustainability assessment methods and approaches in order to appraise and demonstrate that a proposal is Sustainable Development.
Each Local Planning Authority tends to require different information depending on their adopted policy, local issues or often the interests of their Sustainability Officer. Hence it may be sufficient to provide an Energy or Renewable Energy Assessment which may also address water use and surface water run-off.
In other cases a more holistic approach is required, addressing all the relevant elements in the NPPF that are applicable to the project and its location.
We seek to agree at an early stage the scope of what the LPA requires by way of a Sustainability Assessment and what evidence they wish to see to support it, for example preliminary Building Regulations assessments, BREEAM pre-assessment estimators or other tools.
Working with the project team and specialist consultants as appropriate we can then pull together the evidence and produce a report that satisfies the LPA’s policy requirements and demonstrates a project’s sustainability credentials.
As part of this process we are often involved in negotiating more flexible approaches to compliance with what can be quite rigidly drafted policies, seeking to agree a performance standard that the development will achieve, but retaining flexibility as to how this achieved. This is particularly important given the rapidly changing technologies involved, financial incentives and evolving approach that central Government is taking towards energy efficiency in new developments.
Our aim is to demonstrate Sustainable Development to support an application through planning, with a standard to achieve that is both feasible and viable for the developer.