East Herts Council consults residents on how to make developments in the district more sustainable
More environmentally friendly building in Bishop's Stortford and the rest of East Herts is the aim of the district council as it seeks to reduce carbon emissions in the area to net zero within 10 years.
East Herts Council, which is the local planning authority, is asking for residents' views on its first draft of plans to make developments, including houses, more sustainable.
Stortford's Cllr Graham McAndrew, the council's executive member for environmental sustainability, said: "Buildings are responsible for almost half of UK carbon emissions and about a quarter of all raw materials used in the economy. It is important we reduce the environmental impact of the built environment, and the design and construction of new development has a key role to play.
"We're committed to doing everything we can to reduce carbon emissions to zero by 2030 and this is an exciting opportunity to have a real impact and help us to tackle climate change, so please have your say before October 8."
The draft Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) has been written against a challenging backdrop. Significant growth is happening in East Herts, with at least 18,458 new homes being built by 2033 and provision of almost 50 acres of new employment land.
The District Plan, approved in 2018, sets out the importance of implementing this growth sustainably to protect the environment and the quality of life of people who live in, work and visit East Herts.
In July 2019 the council stopped short of declaring a climate emergency but backed a motion to make the authority and East Herts as a district carbon neutral by 2030.
Its draft SPD provides technical guidance on design and construction to improve the environmental sustainability of any new development in East Herts.
It covers a number of topics to encourage more prudent use of resources, to protect the environment and to mitigate and adapt to climate change.
The key considerations are:
* Design-led approach – taking a holistic approach to design
* Energy and carbon – how to reduce carbon emissions and create more energy-efficient developments, incorporating renewable technologies
* Climate change adaptation – how to mitigate overheating and increased risk of flooding
* Water efficiency – how to reduce use of mains water
* Pollution – how to address air, light and noise pollution
* Sustainable transport – how to design development to reduce the need to travel and incorporate better alternatives
* Biodiversity – how to conserve and enhance the range of flora and fauna
* Waste management – how to reduce construction rubbish and design schemes that enable occupants to dispose of refuse sustainably.
You can read the document and make comments at www.eastherts.gov.uk/sustainabilityspd .