PART ll VOLUME 2
Policy Reasoned Justification
 
Open Land
  10.1 THE ROLE OF THE PLAN
  10.2 GOVERNMENT POLICY GUIDANCE
  10.3 OPEN LAND TRENDS AND ISSUES
  10.4 OBJECTIVES
  10.5 POLICY JUSTIFICATION
   
 
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10.1 THE ROLE OF THE PLAN
10.1.1 The protection of open land in order to regulate the growth of urban areas, to preserve the identities and character of existing settlements, and to protect the countryside from inappropriate development is a fundamental objective of the planning system. Development pressures on open land can be intense and the UDP provides the policy framework for regulating such development, and where appropriate affording open land permanent protection from development.
10.1.2 The Plan makes provision for the protection of open land primarily through its designation as Green Belt. To provide the necessary degree of permanence associated with the Green Belt, provision is also made to protect land at the edge of the built up area, as areas of search to meet possible long term development needs. The Plan also makes provision for specialised uses of open land, including protecting agricultural land, washlands and mineral reserves, and regulating mineral extraction, opencast coal working and the disposal of waste. The policies regulating such development aim, in particular, to safeguard the amenity and interests of local inhabitants, and provide maximum protection for the environment.
   
 
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10.2 GOVERNMENT POLICY GUIDANCE
10.2.1 Current Government policy guidance in relation to open land issues is contained in a series of Planning Policy Guidance Notes and Circulars. The policies governing the function of the Green Belt and control of development in the Green Belt are set out in PPG2.
10.2.2 PPG2 states that the Government attaches great importance to the Green Belt and that it's essential characteristic is its permanence and its protection must be maintained as far as can be seen ahead. Once the Green Belt boundary has been defined in a Development Plan it should be altered only in exceptional circumstances. When preparing a new Development Plan, any proposals affecting the Green Belt should be related to a time scale which is longer than normally adopted for other aspects of the plan. The local planning authority should satisfy itself that the Green Belt boundary will not need to be altered at the end of the plan period. To facilitate this permanence the guidance indicates the need to identify and safeguard land between the urban area and the Green Belt which may be required to meet longer term development needs.
10.2.3 The functions of the Green Belt according to Government guidance in PPG2 are:
  i) To check the unrestricted sprawl of large built-up areas;
  ii) To safeguard the surrounding countryside from further encroachment;
  iii) To prevent neighbouring towns from merging into one another;
  iv) To preserve the special character of historic towns;
  v) To assist in urban regeneration.
It provides guidance on the types of development which are appropriate in the Green Belt, and stipulates that there is a general presumption against inappropriate development.
10.2.4 Government guidance regarding the use of agricultural land for development is contained in PPG 7. In the context of European agricultural surpluses the guidance stresses the need for greater flexibility towards development involving the loss of agricultural land. However, national advice and Strategic Guidance still recognise that the best and most versatile agricultural land has a special significance and should not be built on, unless there is no other site suitable for the particular purpose.
10.2.5 Minerals Planning Guidance Notes contain the current guidance relating to mineral working. The guidance requires the local planning authority to make provision for mineral working in its area, as its contribution to meeting the local, regional and national requirement, recognising that minerals can only be worked where they occur. Provision should be made for safeguarding mineral deposits from unnecessary sterilization by other forms of development.
10.2.6 Development Plans should contain policies which set out criteria for determining proposals for mineral working, which would generally secure the extraction of the mineral whilst minimising the harm to the environment in line with the principles of sustainable development outlined in Mineral Planing Guidance Notes. However, because minerals are often found in environmentally sensitive areas, and because of the environmental impact associated with working the deposits, not all proposals will be acceptable. Policies should also be advanced for the restoration and beneficial after use of sites when mineral working has ceased. MPG3 provides specific guidance regarding opencast coal working, emphasising that the acceptability of proposals should be considered on the basis of the environmental implications of carrying it out.
10.2.7 Proposals for waste management and disposal must have regard to national, regional, and strategic guidance, relevant EC Directives, other relevant statements of Government Policy and advice.
10.2.8 The principal EU Directive controlling waste management throughout the EU is the Framework Directive on Waste; transposed into UK law under the Environmental Protection Act 1990; the Environment Act 1995; and associated regulations. The Council has taken these into account in formulating its UDP policies within the following framework:
  i) To ensure that waste is recovered or disposed of without harm to human health, or the environment (i.e. water, air, soil, plants, or animals);
  ii) To establish an integrated and adequate network of waste disposal installations, to enable self-sufficiency; and to ensure that waste is disposed of in accordance with the proximity principle by means of the most appropriate methods and technologies;
  iii) To minimise waste, and encourage materials recycling and energy recovery.
10.2.9 The Landfill Directive (1999/31/EC) was transposed into UK law on 16 July 2001. The Landfill Directive sets out high standards for the future disposal of wastes, to stimulate recycling and recovery of wastes, and to reduce emissions of methane. The main requirements of the EC Landfill Directive are: to reduce biodegradable municipal waste (BMW) to landfill to 75% of 1995 levels by 2010, to 50% by 2013, and to 35% by 2020; banning the co-disposal of hazardous and non-hazardous wastes and requiring separate landfills for hazardous, non-hazardous and inert wastes; banning the landfilling of whole tyres by 2003, and shredded tyres by 2006 and certain types of hazardous wastes by 2001; and provisions for the control, monitoring, reporting and closure of sites.
10.2.10 The Council will adopt a co-ordinated approach to waste management, and seek through consultation with other authorities in the Yorkshire and the Humber Region, and the Regional Technical Advisory Body (RTAB), options for waste management for inclusion in the future revision of the UDP to reflect regional targets and indicators, for achieving the Best Practicable Environmental Option (BPEO). The BPEO procedure establishes for a given set of objectives (stated above) the option that provides the most benefits or least damage to the environment as a whole, at acceptable cost, in the long term as well as the short term. The waste hierarchy, the proximity principle and regional self-sufficiency will be taken into account in identifying the combination of facilities and other waste management options which give the best balance between environmental social and economic needs.
10.2.11 Government guidance on the planning aspects of waste management is set out in Planning Policy Guidance Note 10 (PPG10) Planning and Waste Management (October 1999). PPG23 Planning and Pollution Control is also relevant. The Government requires that those taking decisions on waste management should aim to establish which is the BPEO for dealing with their waste, and should use the waste management hierarchy to inform that consideration.
   
 
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10.3 OPEN LAND TRENDS AND ISSUES
10.3.1 A large proportion of the District remains as rural, undeveloped land, which constitutes a vast resource for agriculture, leisure, nature conservation and other countryside activities. The majority of this land is incorporated in the Green Belt which covers, approximately 70% of the total area of the District.
10.3.2 In parallel the District has experienced a decline in its traditional economic base, demonstrated most clearly by the collapse of the deep-mine industry in the last five years. This has led to an extensive legacy of dereliction often affecting open land. There is a pressing need to achieve the proper reclamation and after-use of derelict collieries and degraded open land.
10.3.3 Open land has also been affected by the more typical environmental changes, referred to in the Environment section, such as the loss of woodland and hedgerows, and the expansion of settlements into open countryside. These pressures will no doubt continue and new pressures will arise. Changes in agricultural policy will lead to pressures for a wider diversity of activities in the countryside, with the consequential implications for open land.
10.3.4 These trends, many of which have significant environmental consequences, need to be considered in the context of a growing awareness of environmental issues and of the importance of protecting the environment and countryside from inappropriate development. As environmental issues are now seen as valid concerns in their own right this will have implications for the use and protection of open land.
   
 
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10.4 OBJECTIVES
10.4.1 The objectives in relation to open land to a large degree correspond with the functions of the Green Belt and those described in the Environment section of the Plan.
   
 
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10.5 POLICY JUSTIFICATION
10.5.1 The open land policies incorporated in the Plan seek, in particular, to address the conflicting pressures on open land and as a matter of principle retain its open nature and environmental quality. The policies satisfy the principles identified in Strategic Guidance and make provision for activities necessarily undertaken on open land.
10.5.2 It should be noted that all proposals for mineral working, waste disposal and other development referred to in the policies of this chapter will also be subject to Environment and Transport policies.
10.5.3 The Green Belt boundary in the District was reviewed comprehensively when the Local Plans were prepared in the mid-1980s, and was defined on the principle that it would remain substantially unchanged for at least 25 years and for the most part over a considerably longer period. However, a number of significant changes were made to the Green Belt boundary in the original UDP, primarily to release land for employment purposes to meet an increased demand which had not been anticipated in the Local Plans. A number of minor changes were also made to the Green Belt where the Local Plan boundary was no longer seen to be appropriate.
10.5.4 The Green Belt has not been reviewed as part of the Alterations to the UDP and changes to the boundary are strictly limited. The following statements are intended to clarify where specific changes have been made and how the Green Belt boundary is to be interpreted:
1) The Green Belt boundary in the Plan is as shown on the original UDP proposals maps except where the following changes have been made:
  a) Specific changes to remove land from the Green Belt for development to meet the UDP's objective of regenerating communities, in the following locations:
    i) South Kirkby Colliery, South Kirkby (policy ref. EMS 1);
    ii) Kimberley Street/Pretoria Street, Featherstone (policy ref. FTH 5).
Details of these proposals can be found in the respective Area Volumes of the UDP.
  b) Specific changes to resolve difficulties of interpreting the Green Belt boundary, in the following locations:
    i) Land at Norwood, Carleton, Pontefract;
    ii) East of Lee Lane, Low Ackworth;
    iii) South of Castle Gate, Patrick Green, Lofthouse;
    iv) Off The Green, Woolley.
2) Where a difference of interpretation occurs between the written text of the Plan and the proposals maps, the written text overrides the proposals maps.
3) The precise line of the Green Belt boundary follows the urban side of the boundary line as shown on the proposals maps.
10.5.5 The Council intends to undertake a comprehensive review of the Green Belt boundary in the District when the UDP is next altered.
 
 
Development in the Green Belt
 
OL1 WITHIN THE GREEN BELT, DEVELOPMENT WILL NOT BE PERMITTED EXCEPT IN VERY SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES FOR PURPOSES OTHER THAN AGRICULTURE, FORESTRY, OUTDOOR PARTICIPATORY SPORTS AND RECREATION, CEMETERIES, OR OTHER USES APPROPRIATE TO A RURAL AREA.
 
OL2 DEVELOPMENT WITHIN THE GREEN BELT WILL NOT BE PERMITTED IF IT WOULD DETRACT FROM THE OPEN CHARACTER OR VISUAL AMENITIES OF A PARTICULAR GREEN BELT LOCATION BY REASONS OF ITS PHYSICAL SCALE OR INTENSITY OF USE, INCLUDING MATTERS OF SITING, DESIGN AND CHOICE OF MATERIALS.
 
10.5.6 The two Green Belt policies provide a strong presumption against inappropriate development in the Green Belt, and essentially limit uses to those which are rural in nature or require extensive areas of land and will, above all, retain the open character of the Green Belt.
10.5.7 Policy OL1 will apply to new buildings, the change of use of buildings and land and to re-building and re-development proposals. For certain types of development, a more detailed interpretation of Green Belt policy is provided below. An exception to Green Belt policy will not be justified merely because land is underused, degraded or derelict. Such land will normally be capable of reclamation or re-use for a compatible Green Belt purpose.
10.5.8 Since agricultural land on the inner edge of the Green Belt is susceptible to trespass and vandalism, 'buffer uses' such as golf courses, country parks, sports facilities, allotments and institutional uses may be desirable in order to separate the built-up area from the countryside. These 'buffer areas' act as a break between residential areas and the open country and provide a natural progression from intensively-used urban land through to the rural land uses of the Green Belt. Such uses are regarded as acceptable Green Belt uses and in appropriate cases new developments within these categories will be encouraged to locate as described. However, in certain Green Belt locations, for example where a narrow wedge of Green Belt separates two settlements, the above types of development will be inappropriate and will not be permitted.
10.5.9 Policy OL2 seeks to protect the open character of the Green Belt. Even where a Green Belt location is suited in principle to a particular use, it is essential that its character is not injured by development which is out of scale or character by virtue of its visual impact or intensity of use. Development will not be permitted which will detract from the open character or visual amenities of a particular Green Belt location.
 
 
Other Functions of Green Belt Land
10.5.10 Land in the Green Belt is an important resource. In addition to the functions outlined in 10.2.3 land within Green Belts fulfils the following objectives:
  i) Provides opportunities for access to the open countryside;
  ii) Provides opportunities for outdoor sport and outdoor recreation;
  iii) Retains and enhances the landscape;
  iv) Provides opportunity to improve damaged and derelict land on urban fringes;
  v) Protects and secures nature conservation interests;
  vi) Retains land in agricultural, forestry and other related uses.
 
10.5.11 The Plan contains a wide range of policies relevant to these functions. It includes policies contained in the Environment section for nature conservation, Green Corridors, reclamation, tree planting / woodland creation, landscape conservation, and policies in the Leisure section for countryside leisure provision and the protection and improvement of the footpath network. The agricultural function of most Green Belt land is recognised in the Plan, and Policy OL5 seeks to protect the best and most versatile agricultural land from unnecessary development.
 
 
Extensions and Alterations to Dwellings in the Green Belt
10.5.12 Most villages and all of the larger settlements are excluded from the Green Belt. In respect of properties within the Green Belt, the Council consider, in the light of Guidance in PPG2 (revised), that extensions and alterations to existing dwellings will normally be appropriate development.
 
 
OL14 WITHIN THE GREEN BELT EXTENSIONS AND ALTERATIONS TO EXISTING DWELLINGS WILL NOT BE PERMITTED UNLESS:
  i) THE EXTENSION IS NOT DISPROPORTIONATE OVER AND ABOVE THE SIZE OF THE EXISTING ORIGINAL DWELLING;
  ii) THE SCALE, MATERIALS AND GENERAL DESIGN OF THE EXTENSION / ALTERATIONS ARE IN KEEPING WITH THE CHARACTER OF THE ORIGINAL BUILDINGS AND THEIR SURROUNDINGS;
  iii) ANY PROPOSAL MUST CONFORM TO POLICY OL2, ENVIRONMENT AND TRANSPORT POLICIES.
   
 
Replacement Dwellings in the Green Belt
10.5.13 In accordance with paragraph 3.6 of PPG2, the Council has adopted the following policy to clarify its approach to such replacement.
 
 
OL15 WITHIN THE GREEN BELT REPLACEMENT OF EXISTING DWELLINGS WILL NOT BE PERMITTED UNLESS:
  i) THE NEW DWELLING IS NOT MATERIALLY LARGER THAN THE DWELLING IT REPLACES;
  ii) THE ORIGINAL DWELLING IS OF PERMANENT AND SUBSTANTIAL CONSTRUCTION;
  iii) THE SCALE, MATERIALS AND GENERAL DESIGN OF THE BUILDINGS ARE IN KEEPING WITH THE CHARACTER OF THEIR SURROUNDINGS;
  iv) ANY PROPOSAL MUST CONFORM TO POLICY OL2, ENVIRONMENT AND TRANSPORT POLICIES.
   
10.5.14 Consideration will be given to siting of the replacement dwelling in the local landscape and its affect upon the openness of the Green Belt.
10.5.15 Further guidance will be prepared on detailed criteria to be considered by the Council in the determination of applications for the extension and alteration of dwellings in the Green Belt.
 
 
New Dwellings in the Green Belt
10.5.16 Existing settlements make an important contribution to the character of the Green Belt and the Council will seek to safeguard this through strong development control policies. However, within those settlements which are too small or scattered to be excluded from the Green Belt, the following policy permits some limited infill within established settlements.
 
 
OL16 WITHIN THE GREEN BELT LIMITED RESIDENTIAL INFILLING WILL NOT BE PERMITTED UNLESS:
  i) THE DEVELOPMENT COMPRISES OF INFILL OF ONE OR TWO DWELLINGS TO CLOSE A SMALL GAP IN AN EXISTING BUILT UP FRONTAGE;
  ii) THE DEVELOPMENT DOES NOT EXTEND THE CONFINES OF THE SETTLEMENT; AND
  iii) THE SCALE, MATERIALS, AND GENERAL DESIGN OF THE DEVELOPMENT IS IN KEEPING WITH THE CHARACTER OF THE EXISTING SETTLEMENT AND ITS SURROUNDINGS;
  iv) ANY PROPOSAL MUST CONFORM TO POLICY OL2, ENVIRONMENT AND TRANSPORT POLICIES.
 
10.5.17 The schedule of settlements to which OL16 will be applied is shown below. The infill boundaries for these settlements are shown on the proposals maps.
Carr Gate
Chapelthorpe
East Hardwick
Midgley
North Elmsall
Old Snydale
Warmfield
Wentbridge
Wragby
10.5.18 Infill will not be permitted among small groups of buildings or in settlements which consist of ribbon development, small isolated terraces, cottages or farms, where development would detract from the open character of the area.
10.5.19 The policy will not be applicable to isolated terraces or small groups of buildings. The Council's policy towards the creation of new dwellings through the re-use of existing buildings is discussed below under "Changes of Use".
 
 
Dwellings for Agricultural Workers
10.5.20 The need for an agricultural dwelling should be met, as far as possible, through the use of existing buildings and the applicant will be expected to provide evidence that all such possibilities have been investigated. Where a new dwelling is permitted, it will normally be made conditional that the house will be occupied by a person employed locally in agriculture.
 
 
OL17 DWELLINGS FOR AGRICULTURAL WORKERS WILL NOT BE PERMITTED UNLESS:
  i) THERE IS CONVINCING EVIDENCE ESTABLISHING THE VIABILITY OF THE AGRICULTURAL UNIT;
  ii) A CONCLUSIVE NEED FOR A NEW DWELLING EXISTS ON AGRICULTURAL GROUNDS;
  iii) CONVINCING EVIDENCE HAS BEEN PROVIDED THAT NO ALTERNATIVE ACCOMMODATION IS AVAILABLE TO SATISFY THE AGRICULTURAL NEED; AND
  iv) THE SCALE, MATERIALS AND GENERAL DESIGN OF THE DWELLING IS IN KEEPING WITH THE CHARACTER OF ITS SURROUNDINGS.
   
10.5.21 The applicant will be requested to submit evidence from an independent consultant to provide an assessment of the viability of the unit and agricultural need for a new dwelling. Where a dwelling is proposed in connection with a new enterprise, permission will only be granted on the basis that construction does not commence until points (i) and (ii) of policy OL17 have been satisfied. Permission for a temporary dwelling will normally be granted for the intervening period.
10.5.22 A genuine need must be demonstrated for full-time supervision on site (for example, the continual supervision of breeding livestock) which cannot be carried out by other persons on or close to the site. Supervision solely to achieve security of the premises is not sufficient reason to justify a new dwelling in the Green Belt.
 
 
Existing Industry and Business Uses in the Green Belt
10.5.23 No action is envisaged to force the relocation of existing industrial and business concerns in the Green Belt. However, there will be a presumption against redevelopment for industry on existing industrial / business sites in the Green Belt. Extensions and / or free-standing buildings within the existing curtilage of the unit will be considered on merit subject to Policy OL2 and normal development control considerations. There will be a presumption against proposals involving the extension of an industrial curtilage into the Green Belt.
 
 
Major Developed Sites
10.5.24 In accordance with PPG2 Annex C the Council has identified the following sites as major developed sites in the Green Belt:
Bretton Hall
Ackworth School
Former Ackworth Colliery

The boundaries of these sites are shown on the proposals maps.
 
 
OL21 WITHIN THE GREEN BELT, INFILLING AT THE MAJOR DEVELOPED SITES IDENTIFIED IN PARAGRAPH 10.5.24 WILL NOT BE INAPPROPRIATE DEVELOPMENT PROVIDED THAT:
  i) IT HAS NO GREATER IMPACT ON THE PURPOSES OF INCLUDING LAND IN THE GREEN BELT THAN THE EXISTING DEVELOPMENT;
  ii) IT DOES NOT EXCEED THE HEIGHT OF THE EXISTING BUILDINGS;
  iii) IT DOES NOT LEAD TO MAJOR INCREASE IN THE DEVELOPED PROPORTION OF THE SITE.
 
OL22 WITHIN THE GREEN BELT, REDEVELOPMENT OF THE MAJOR DEVELOPED SITES IDENTIFIED IN PARAGRAPH 10.5.24 WILL NOT BE INAPPROPRIATE DEVELOPMENT PROVIDED THAT:
  i) IT HAS NO GREATER IMPACT ON THE OPENNESS OF THE GREEN BELT AND THE PURPOSE OF INCLUDING LAND IN IT, THAN THE EXISTING DEVELOPMENT;
  ii) IT CONTRIBUTES TO THE ACHIEVEMENT OF THE OBJECTIVES FOR THE USE OF LAND IN THE GREEN BELTS;
  iii) IT DOES NOT EXCEED THE HEIGHT OF THE EXISTING BUILDINGS;
  iv) IT WILL NOT OCCUPY A LARGER AREA OF THE SITE THAN THE EXISTING BUILDINGS - UNLESS IT WOULD ACHIEVE A REDUCTION IN HEIGHT WHICH WOULD BENEFIT VISUAL AMENITY.
   
10.5.25 Any proposal must conform to Policy OL2, Environment and Transport policies.
 
 
Re-Use of Buildings in the Green Belt
10.5.26 In accordance with paragraphs 3.7 - 3.10 of PPG2, the Council has adopted the following policy to clarify its approach to re-use of buildings within the Green Belt.
 
 
OL18 THE RE-USE OF BUILDINGS WITHIN THE GREEN BELT IS APPROPRIATE DEVELOPMENT PROVIDING THAT:
  i) IT DOES NOT HAVE A MATERIALLY GREATER IMPACT THAN THE PRESENT USE ON THE OPENNESS OF THE GREEN BELT;
  ii) EXTENSIONS AND USE OF LAND WHICH MIGHT CONFLICT WITH THE OPENNESS OF THE GREEN BELT AND THE PURPOSES OF INCLUDING LAND WITHIN IT WILL NOT BE PERMITTED (E.G. EXTENSIVE EXTERNAL STORAGE, EXTENSIVE HARDSTANDING, CAR PARKING, BOUNDARY WALLING OR FENCING);
  iii) THE BUILDINGS ARE OF PERMANENT AND SUBSTANTIAL CONSTRUCTION AND ARE CAPABLE OF CONVERSION WITHOUT MAJOR OR COMPLETE RECONSTRUCTION;
  iv) THE SCALE, MATERIALS AND GENERAL DESIGN OF THE BUILDINGS ARE IN KEEPING WITH THE CHARACTER OF THE ORIGINAL BUILDINGS AND THEIR SURROUNDINGS;
  v) ANY PROPOSAL MUST CONFORM TO POLICY OL2, ENVIRONMENT AND TRANSPORT POLICIES.
     
 
Re-Use of Agricultural Buildings
10.5.27 In accordance with Annex D of PPG2, the Council has adopted the following policy to clarify its approach to re-use and permitted development rights for agricultural buildings.
 
 
OL19 WHERE THE COUNCIL CONSIDER THAT PERMITTED DEVELOPMENT RIGHTS FOR NEW FARM BUILDINGS ARE BEING ABUSED, THEY MAY BE WITHDRAWN. IN CASES OF GRANTING PLANNING PERMISSION FOR THE RE-USE OF EXISTING AGRICULTURAL BUILDINGS FOR NON-AGRICULTURAL USE, THE COUNCIL WILL CONSIDER WITHDRAWING PERMITTED DEVELOPMENT RIGHTS ON PART OR ALL OF THE AGRICULTURAL HOLDING WHERE THERE IS A DANGER OF A PROLIFERATION OF FARM BUILDINGS HAVING A DETRIMENTAL AFFECT ON THE OPENNESS OF THE GREEN BELT.
 
 
Intensive Livestock Units
10.5.28 Intensive Livestock Units are acceptable in principle within the Green Belt under Policy OL1 and, whilst not a significant issue within the District, require careful consideration in terms of their visual, amenity and environmental implications.
10.5.29 In accordance with Policy OL2, the Council will have regard to the visual impact of any development on a particular Green Belt locality, including the appropriateness of materials and adequacy of screening and landscaping.
10.5.30 The Council will also have regard to the impact of proposals on the amenities of any nearby residents and on the environment generally. In accordance with Policy E43 development will not be permitted if it would be significantly intrusive in terms of pollution or nuisance on amenity of environmental quality. In considering the acceptability of development, the Council will have regard to the proximity and impact of livestock units and slurry storage areas on nearby dwellings and the arrangements for slurry disposal.
 
 
Open Land within Built-Up Areas
   
OL3 WITHIN THE AREA IDENTIFIED UNDER THIS POLICY, DEVELOPMENT WILL NOT BE PERMITTED EXCEPT IN VERY SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES FOR PURPOSES OTHER THAN THOSE WHICH WOULD BE APPROPRIATE IN A RURAL AREA AND WHICH WOULD NOT SUBSTANTIALLY AFFECT THE OPEN CHARACTER OF THE LAND OR DETRACT FROM ITS AMENITY VALUE.
 
10.5.31 The Green Belt policies are designed to protect open land around and between settlements. Nevertheless, there is a large tract of open land within Wakefield worthy of protection, but which is not appropriate for Green Belt designation. Policy OL3 fulfils a similar role to the Green Belt policies, but within the built-up area, safeguarding open land from urban encroachment and preserving the identities of distinct and separate communities.
10.5.32 In general, the interpretive matter relating to development in the Green Belt will be applicable within the area designated under Policy OL3. Proposals for recreational and amenity uses might be acceptable provided that the open character of the land remains substantially unaffected. Proposals for development which would detract from the amenity value of the land, such as open storage, would not be considered acceptable. It should be noted that this policy only applies to one designated tract of open land. Policies regarding smaller urban open spaces are contained within the Leisure section of the Plan.
 
 
Protected Areas of Search for Long Term Development
   
OL4 WITHIN THOSE AREAS SHOWN ON THE PROPOSALS MAPS UNDER THIS POLICY, DEVELOPMENT WILL BE RESTRICTED TO THAT WHICH IS NECESSARY FOR THE OPERATION OF EXISTING USES TOGETHER WITH SUCH TEMPORARY USES AS WOULD NOT PREJUDICE THE POSSIBILITY OF LONG TERM DEVELOPMENT.
 
10.5.33 To facilitate the permanence of the Green Belt, referred to in paragraph 10.5.3 and which is still expected to endure well beyond the end of the Plan period, land has been identified which may be suitable to meet longer-term development needs. These undeveloped areas of land, often substantial in size, have been and will need to continue to be protected by Policy OL4, in order to ensure that development takes place on land specifically allocated for that purpose during the Plan period.
10.5.34 It should be noted that Policy OL4 is in some senses even more stringent than Green Belt in restricting development to that necessary for the operation of existing uses, or to such temporary uses as would not prejudice long-term development. Accordingly, examples of the type of development unacceptable on land designated under Policy OL4 would include those developments described earlier as buffer Green Belt uses, including golf courses, burial grounds, Country Parks, certain sports facilities and institutional uses (unless temporary), and allotments. Other temporary development proposals will be treated on merit.
10.5.35 Land covered by this designation should not automatically be regarded as potential long-term development land. In subsequent reviews of the Plan, the land allocated under Policy OL4 will be re-examined according to circumstances then pertaining and it may be, therefore, that some land covered by this designation will be added to the Green Belt in the future.
10.5.36 In unforeseen circumstances, the need may arise within the Plan period to make land available for development which is not allocated for that purpose. Land covered by policy OL4 would in this instance form part of a comprehensive study of all available land in the District. The specific order of search within such a study to meet an unexpected need would be:
  a) non OL4 and non-Green Belt land;
  b) OL4 land and;
  c) (only as a last resort) give consideration to the release of Green Belt land.
 
 
The Protection of Agricultural Land
   
OL5 THE BEST AND MOST VERSATILE AGRICULTURAL LAND WILL BE PROTECTED FROM IRREVERSIBLE DEVELOPMENT. IN PARTICULAR, DEVELOPMENT INVOLVING A SIGNIFICANT LOSS FROM AGRICULTURE OF LAND GRADED 3(A) OR HIGHER WILL NOT BE PERMITTED WHERE LAND OF A LOWER QUALITY COULD BE DEVELOPED FOR THE PARTICULAR PURPOSE. PROPOSALS TO WORK MINERALS ON THE BEST AND MOST VERSATILE AGRICULTURAL LAND WILL NOT NORMALLY BE PERMITTED UNLESS IT CAN BE DEMONSTRATED THAT A HIGH STANDARD OF RESTORATION TO THE SAME AGRICULTURAL LAND QUALITY CAN BE ACHIEVED.
 
10.5.37 Policy OL5 makes provision for the protection of the highest quality agricultural land, in accordance with Government guidance. In the District the best and most versatile agricultural land is generally Grade 3(a), although areas of higher grade land have been identified in detailed surveys of parts of the District. Green Belt policy affords some protection for agricultural land, but uses, such as recreation, could be proposed which, though compatible with Green Belt functions, could result in extensive loss of the best agricultural land in the District.
10.5.38 This approach reflects the need for greater flexibility towards development involving the loss of lower quality agricultural land, in order to accommodate farm diversification and diversification of the rural economy. This diversification is necessary to help sustain the rural economy in view of the enforced reduction in agricultural output resulting from food surpluses.
10.5.39 In deciding whether a proposal is likely to result in a "significant loss" of good agricultural land, the Council will be guided by the statutory requirements for consultation on planning applications with the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAFF). Advice received from MAFF will be an important consideration in determining planning applications.
10.5.40 Proposals to work minerals on the best and most versatile agricultural land will also be considered in the light of other relevant policies of the Plan, and in particular Open Land Policies OL8-OL10.
 
 
The Protection of Washlands
 
OL6 DEVELOPMENT WILL NOT NORMALLY BE PERMITTED IN DESIGNATED WASHLANDS EXCEPT WHERE:
  i) THE PROPOSED DEVELOPMENT WOULD NOT SIGNIFICANTLY AFFECT THE FUNCTION OF THE WASHLAND; AND
  ii) THERE WOULD BE NO SERIOUS RISK TO THE DEVELOPMENT FROM FLOOD DEBRIS OR POLLUTION.
 
10.5.41 Wakefield District is drained into four major catchments of the Rivers Aire, Calder, Dearne and Don. Some of the watercourses which drain into these are classified as Main Rivers:
  River Aire: Wash Dike/Friar Wood Beck; Lee Moor Beck/Lingwell Gate Beck
  River Calder: Choke Churl/Gilcar Beck/Wain Dike/Sewerbridge Beck; Ings Beck/River
  Chald/Westgate Beck/Alverthorpe Beck; Balne Beck
  River Don: River Went/Went Beck; The Beck/Hague Hall Beck
  River Dearne.
The Environment Agency is responsible for designating, managing and controlling these main rivers under their bylaws and has designated the land around them which provides essential storage of floodwater as washland. Areas designated as washland are mainly within the natural river floodplains. These areas are shown on the Area Proposals Maps together with washlands on ordinary watercourses.
 
10.5.42 It is important that these washlands are protected from development, because if a river is deprived of its washland (for example, by development which raises the height of land or creates a barrier to floodwater) then this can lead to more serious flooding problems elsewhere, perhaps affecting built-up areas.
10.5.43 Although the designated washlands are mainly within the Green Belt, giving protection from most development, this alone is not considered sufficient. For instance, mineral and tipping activities may be acceptable under Green Belt policies. Policy OL6 provides the greater protection from development considered necessary for these important areas. However, it does not preclude all development and uses which are envisaged as being acceptable. These include playing fields, agricultural use, open space, allotments etc. The appropriate use will depend on the frequency of flooding, and development proposals will be the subject of consultations with the Environment Agency.
10.5.44 There are many other areas of land in the District that are subject to flooding on which development may be possible subject to appropriate compensatory works and / or flood protection. The washland areas designated on the proposals maps are the most important areas that must be protected from inappropriate development.
 
 
The Protection of Mineral Reserves Other Than Coal
 
OL7 MINERAL RESERVES IDENTIFIED ON THE PROPOSAL MAPS OR THE SUBJECT OF PLANNING PERMISSION WILL BE PROTECTED FROM DEVELOPMENT THAT COULD RESULT IN THEIR STERILISATION. THE COUNCIL, IN CONJUNCTION WITH OTHER METROPOLITAN COUNCILS IN WEST YORKSHIRE, WILL ENDEAVOUR TO MAINTAIN A `LAND BANK' OF PERMITTED RESERVES OF SAND, GRAVEL AND CRUSHED ROCK AND ALSO MAINTAIN ITS CONTRIBUTION TO MEETING ITS SHARE OF AGGREGATES DEMAND IN THE REGION, UNLESS EXCEPTIONAL CIRCUMSTANCES PREVAIL, IN ACCORDANCE WITH NATIONAL AND REGIONAL GUIDANCE.
 
10.5.45 Mineral resources are relatively scarce in the District. Wakefield relies on imports from other areas for the majority of aggregate minerals used in the District. Mineral reserves occurring in the District include brick clay (commonly associated with coal deposits), limestone in the east of the District and sand and gravel along the Calder valley.
10.5.46 Mineral reserves mostly occur in areas designated Green Belt and this will generally achieve the degree of protection required. However, certain uses acceptable under Green Belt policy could prejudice the possibility of mineral extraction (for example, uses involving new buildings). Therefore, Policy OL7 provides protection from development which might result in sterilization of mineral reserves other than opencastable coal. Opencast coal reserves are much more widespread and it is not possible to earmark particular reserves. This continues the approach successfully adopted in the former Local Plans.
10.5.47 Mineral working can assist the local economy and the limited supply of deposits can justify their protection from development. However, this must be balanced against other factors, such as the likelihood of extraction and acceptability on planning grounds. The Proposals Maps indicate those areas which are considered, on balance, to justify protection from development that could result in sterilization of the mineral reserves. A specific justification will be provided in each case.
10.5.48 The policy does not, of itself, seek to prevent the working of any reserves not specified in the Plan, but any application submitted for working will be considered according to the criteria of Policy OL8.
 
 
Mineral Extraction
 
OL8 PROPOSALS FOR MINERAL EXTRACTION WILL NORMALLY BE PERMITTED ONLY WHERE IT CAN BE DEMONSTRATED THAT THE SOCIAL EFFECTS OF THE PROPOSAL ON LOCAL INHABITANTS, AND THE ENVIRONMENTAL EFFECTS ON:
  i) THE LOCAL INHABITANTS;
  ii) THE LANDSCAPE OF THE AREA;
  iii) EXISTING AND PROPOSED LAND USES IN THE LOCALITY ARE ACCEPTABLE; AND,
  iv) IN THE GREEN BELT THE PROPOSALS PROVIDE FOR OPERATION AND RESTORATION TO THE HIGHEST ENVIRONMENTAL STANDARDS.
   
10.5.49 In the light of the relative scarcity of most minerals, other than coal, within the District, it is not considered appropriate to adopt policies to control the working of each of the minerals individually. Consequently, Policy OL8 is intended to provide the basic development control policy for mineral extraction other than coal.
10.5.50 The Proposals Maps indicate areas of mineral reserves identified as likely to be exploited, but the acceptability of any proposals to work the minerals will be dependant on the acceptability of their social and environmental impact on the locality, in accordance with Policy OL8. Mineral reserves, almost without exception occur in the Green Belt, and proposals for extraction will be subject to Green Belt policies. Mineral extraction need not be inappropriate development, nor conflict with the purposes of including land in the Green Belt provided that high environmental standards are maintained and the site is restored. Mineral extraction proposals should however contribute to the objectives for use of land in the Green Belt referred to in paragraph 10.5.10 above.
 
 
OL9 PROPOSALS FOR COAL EXTRACTION AND COLLIERY SPOIL DISPOSAL WILL NOT NORMALLY BE PERMITTED UNLESS IT CAN BE DEMONSTRATED THAT:
  i) THE PROPOSALS ARE ENVIRONMENTALLY ACCEPTABLE, OR CAN BE MADE SO BY PLANNING CONDITIONS OR OBLIGATIONS; OR,
  ii) THE PROPOSALS PROVIDE LOCAL OR COMMUNITY BENEFITS WHICH CLEARLY OUTWEIGH THE LIKELY ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS TO JUSTIFY THE DEVELOPMENT; AND,
  iii) IN THE GREEN BELT THE PROPOSALS PROVIDE FOR OPERATION AND RESTORATION TO THE HIGHEST ENVIRONMENTAL STANDARDS.
  IN ASSESSING THE ACCEPTABILITY OF PROPOSALS, THE COUNCIL WILL HAVE REGARD TO MATERIAL, SOCIAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS, PARTICULARLY INCLUDING:
  a) THE ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS OF NOISE, VIBRATION, DUST, BLASTING, VISUAL INTRUSION AND TRAFFIC AND THE CONSEQUENT CUMULATIVE IMPACT THEREFROM ON LOCAL AMENITY;
  b) THE EFFECTS ON LANDSCAPE, INCLUDING FEATURES OF ARCHAEOLOGICAL, HISTORIC OR NATURAL INTEREST, AND AGRICULTURE;
  c) THE EFFECTS ON PROTECTED SITES FOR NATURE CONSERVATION OF NATIONAL OR INTERNATIONAL DESIGNATION, WHICH WILL BE THE SUBJECT OF THE MOST RIGOROUS EXAMINATION;
  d) GREEN BELT LOCATION, WHERE APPLICABLE;
  e) EFFECT ON HYDROLOGY OR HYDROGEOLOGY;
  f) THE AVOIDANCE OF STERILISATION OF THE MINERAL;
  g) THE AVOIDANCE OF UNPLANNED, PIECEMEAL WORKING OF DEPOSITS;
  h) THE EFFICIENT AND ECONOMIC WORKING OF OTHER MINERAL DEPOSITS IN AN ENVIRONMENTALLY ACCEPTABLE WAY;
  i) CUMULATIVE IMPACT ARISING IN THE LOCALITY FROM THE EXTENT OF PAST MINING ACTIVITY, OTHER WORKING SITES, ONGOING RESTORATION AND UNBROKEN SEQUENCES OF WORKING AND RESTORATION;
  j) THE EFFECT ON REGENERATION OBJECTIVES, INCLUDING THE IMAGE OF THE LOCALITY AND EFFORTS TO ATTRACT OR RETAIN INVESTMENT;
  AND,
  k) THE EXTENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL OR OTHER BENEFITS ATTRIBUTABLE TO THE PROPOSAL.
 
10.5.51 The potential for opencast coal extraction is widespread within the District that Policy OL9 forms the policy basis by which any proposals will be considered, and having regard to the most recent Government policy in MPG3 and DETR advice of February 2000. Many localities may have been subjected to environmentally intrusive mining activity in their vicinity for many years and the level of activity that a locality can reasonably be excepted to tolerate over a particular period is an important consideration. In this situation the Council is anxious to focus activity on those sites where positive environmental and local community benefits accrue from mining operations. In particular, emphasis will be given to restoration of previously derelict areas, former colliery sites for beneficial uses, the stabilisation of unstable ground, or where landscape enhancement or a contribution to biodiversity can be achieved.
10.5.52 The Council will apply the principles of sustainable development when considering any proposals for coal working (mined or opencast) and colliery spoil disposal, and in accordance with MPG3 (March 1999) and Policy OL9. Proposals within or likely to affect national or internationally designated areas (as referred in paragraphs 3.5.5 to 3.5.7 shall be the subject of the most rigorous examination; and other local environmentally significant areas (such as Sites of Scientific Interest (SSIs), Local Nature Reserves (LNRs)) will be given careful consideration, although the degree of protection given to such areas shall not be as high as that given to the nationally designated areasProposals within or likely to affect Protected Sites for Nature Conservation will be considered against Policy E1 and E2 and will be subject to the most rigorous examination. In the Green Belt proposals will be considered against Policy OL1 and OL2. Only those proposals which provide for the operation and restoration to the highest environmental standards will be permitted.
10.5.53 Regional Planning Guidance for Yorkshire and the Humber also recognises that opencast coal production will in future play a less significant role in providing the nation's energy requirements. Where there is material evidence that coal extraction and related development would have an adverse effect on efforts to attract and retain investment in the locality, this is a material consideration which should be taken into account in deciding planning applications.
10.5.54 With regard to the issue of respirable dust, (or "PM10" particulate matter of less than 10 microns diameter), the Council supports guidance given by the DETR in February 2000 which states that the coal industry and mineral planning authorities in England should follow the research report and COMEAP (Committee on the Medical Effects of Air Pollutants) recommendations in drawing up and considering proposals for new opencast sites, or extensions or modifications to existing sites. The Council attaches significant weight to the "Precautionary Principle" set out in MPG3 which advises that this principle should be adopted to ensure that developments do not result in unacceptable levels of airborne dust. Unless proposals can be shown to be environmentally acceptable the Council considers that planning applications should be refused in accordance with the precautionary principle and the general presumption against development set out in MPG3.
10.5.55 Although all opencast sites are restored after completion, environmental intrusion occurs on a considerable scale whilst the site is being worked. The main problems concern noise, dust, vibration and visual intrusion as well as the transporting of coal, spoil and other materials often by road. Additionally, the Council is concerned that opencast mining activity can have a serious impact on the image of the locality in the minds of potential investors, thereby prejudicing its long term regeneration aims. In the longer term, the Council is also concerned that restoration cannot adequately replace ecologies and landscape which have evolved over a long period of time.
10.5.56 The threat to the Districts environment from opencast coal working comes on top of the legacy of despoliation resulting from coal mining. The protection of the remaining areas becomes even more important when this factor is taken into account. Nevertheless, account will be taken of the opportunity afforded by opencast working to provide positive benefits to the local community. For example, the reclamation of existing derelict areas may be brought about; the restoration operations may provide an opportunity for the disposal of solid waste or colliery waste; or the site on completion of working may provide opportunities for recreational schemes or other beneficial uses which would not otherwise have arisen or the creation of new ecological resources.
10.5.57 Where proposals for mineral extraction are considered acceptable under Policies OL8 and OL9 they will also be subject to Policy OL10, which will allow the operational details of the proposals to be controlled.
 
 
OL10 PROPOSALS ACCEPTABLE UNDER POLICIES OL8 AND OL9 WILL BE SUBJECT TO CONDITIONS AND, WHERE APPROPRIATE, LEGAL AGREEMENTS AND/ OR PLANNING OBLIGATIONS MAY BE ENTERED INTO WHICH MAKE PROVISION FOR:
  i) SAFEGUARDING OF NATURE CONSERVATION INTERESTS IN COMPLIANCE WITH THE APPROPRIATE ENVIRONMENTAL POLICIES;
  ii) THE MINIMISING OF OTHER ENVIRONMENTAL PROBLEMS;
  iii) THE ADEQUATE ADVANCE SCREENING OF THE SITE;
  iv) SATISFACTORY ACCESS ARRANGEMENTS AND APPROPRIATE TRANSPORT MODES;
  v) A FULLY DETAILED AND PHASED SCHEME OF LAND RESTORATION, LANDSCAPING, AFTERCARE AND AFTERUSE LINKED TO A PERMITTED PERIOD OF OPERATION.
   
10.5.58 The criteria incorporated in Policy OL10 are considered essential by the Council to ensure mineral extraction operations take place with a minimum of disruption to local communities and the environment, and that the proper restoration and after use of sites is achieved. In all cases high environmental standards will be insisted upon. This policy should be considered in conjunction with the Environment policies and, where appropriate national policy guidance on development within the Green Belt which provide the context for the conditions, legal agreements and for planning obligations.
 
 
Waste Management
10.5.59 In addition to Government guidance, the Council must also consider national policy set out in "Waste Strategy 2000" (May 2000). The Government is committed to improve the performance of waste management, including targets to move further towards waste reduction, re-use, and recovery, and less reliance on disposal. The "waste hierarchy" is a conceptual framework which acts as a guide to the options for waste when assessing the Best Practical Environmental Option.
 
 
OL11 IN ACCORDANCE WITH NATIONAL AND REGIONAL GUIDANCE THE COUNCIL WILL PROMOTE AND ENCOURAGE A WASTE MANAGEMENT HIERARCHY FAVOURING THE REDUCTION, RE-USE AND RECYCLING OF WASTE ABOVE DISPOSAL.
 
10.5.60 The treatment and disposal of waste gives rise to a number of environmental concerns which the Government has sought to address through the Best Practical Environmental Option (BPEO) and the "Waste Hierarchy". This outlines a more sustainable approach to waste management which emphasises reduction, reuse and recovery before landfill disposal of material.
10.5.61 The "Proximity Principle" states that waste should be managed and disposed of close to its source wherever practical, to reduce the environmental impact of transporting it elsewhere. Local circumstances, and availability of technology to deal with wastes, will influence the types of facilities locally available.
10.5.62 The Council believes that a flexible approach to BPEO for waste management needs to be adopted to take advantage of changing technologies and circumstances. At the present time the principle means of waste disposal in the District is to landfill. The Welbeck landfill reclamation scheme is an established disposal facility for which planning permission was granted in 1997 for approximately 14 million cubic metres of controlled waste and colliery spoil. The planning permission is valid until 2018 by which time the site is to be restored. The Welbeck Landfill site is centrally located in the District and has sufficient capacity within the UDP plan period to deal with general municipal wastes. It is also an important sub-regional facility used by other waste collection authorities and the private sector. The site contributes to regional self-sufficiency, and the proximity principle.
10.5.63 The Welbeck site also operates composting from green wastes to provide restoration material for the site, and also will provide opportunity for energy recovery from landfill gas. In terms of current BPEO the Welbeck scheme will continue as the basis for waste disposal in the District, and provide removal of dereliction by former mineral extraction and restoration to beneficial after-uses. However the development of a Municipal Waste Management Strategy will reduce reliance on landfill and introduce the need for other technologies to deal with the Authority's Municipal waste. In order to meet the targets and requirements of the EC Landfill Directive, it will be necessary for the Council to consider alternative treatment methods to secure the diversion of waste from landfill disposal in favour of other options in the waste hierarchy.
10.5.64 There are a number of recycling schemes in operation such as bottle banks, paper collection and aluminium can collection facilities. Within the District, civic amenity sites provide a localised network of collection points to enable sorting and bulking up of household wastes prior to disposal. Sites within the District will reduce flytipping, and the need for the public to travel to dispose of their wastes. The Council recognises however, that recycling material and reclamation facilities can themselves give rise to environmental problems and have adverse effects on local amenity such as litter and noise. Waste facilities such as depots, transfer stations and scrap yards need to be carefully located to avoid environmental problems. Other facilities for recycling such as those provided by local supermarket developments present less of an environmental problem and will generally be encouraged.
10.5.65 The objectives of the Council's waste management policies are:
  i) To minimise the generation of waste and to encourage recycling;
  ii) To protect the environment of the District and to avoid loss of amenity to communities;
  iii) To ensure that waste is disposed of safely, efficiently and effectively in accordance with the principle of sustainability;
  iv) To ensure control over waste operations and the full restoration of sites to a beneficial after use.
10.5.66 In accordance with Government policy the Council accepts that over time there should be less reliance on landfill disposal, and adoption of other forms of waste management further up the waste hierarchy that will need to be considered. The current capacity at Welbeck, (and the potential capacity at the Nostell Brickworks) are regarded therefore as sufficient beyond the plan period for no further sites for waste disposal to landfill to be identified.
10.5.67 At the current time there are no definite requirements for specific alternative major waste management facilities, such as incinerators and recycling plants, for dealing with wastes arising in the District, or at Regional level. The development of a new waste strategy is likely to require the development of alternative forms of waste management facilities. A comprehensive set of criteria against which applications for the development of waste facilities will be considered is set out in Policy OL23.
 
 
OL23 PROPOSALS FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF MAJOR NEW WASTE FACILITIES, WILL BE CONSIDERED PRIMARILY ON THE BASIS OF THE BEST PRACTICAL ENVIRONMENTAL OPTION, AND WILL HAVE REGARD TO:
  i) REGIONAL REQUIREMENTS;
  ii) THE PROXIMITY PRINCIPLE;
  iii) REGIONAL SELF-SUFFICIENCY;
  iv) THE PROTECTION OF THE ENVIRONMENT AND THE COMMUNITY.
   
10.5.68 The concern of the Council, as the Local Planning Authority, is to ensure the policies incorporated in the UDP allow for the necessary waste management facilities to be provided, with the appropriate environmental safeguards.
 
 
OL12 PROPOSALS FOR WASTE MANAGEMENT FACILITIES WILL BE PERMITTED WHERE THE EFFECTS OF THE PROPOSALS ON:
  i) THE ENVIRONMENT;
  ii) ON OTHER EXISTING AND PROPOSED LAND USES;
  iii) AND THE LOCAL INHABITANTS/ COMMUNITIES;
  ARE ACCEPTABLE.
  IN CONSIDERING THE ACCEPTABILITY OF PROPOSALS FOR WASTE MANAGEMENT FACILITIES THE COUNCIL WILL HAVE REGARD TO THE FOLLOWING:
  i) THE EFFECTS OF WASTE MANAGEMENT FACILITIES ON OTHER LAND;
  ii) PROXIMITY TO OTHER DEVELOPMENT (EXISTING OR PROPOSED);
  iii) IMPACT'S ON AMENITY;
  iv) TRANSPORT MODE, ACCESS, TRAFFIC VOLUMES, HIGHWAY SAFETY;
  v) LAND INSTABILITY;
  vi) PROPOSED HOURS OF OPERATION;
  vii) LOCAL ENVIRONMENTAL EFFECTS INCLUDING; NOISE, DUST, ODOUR, ATTRACTION OF VERMIN OR BIRDS, LITTER, POLLUTION, OR CONTAMINATION;
  viii) IMPACT'S OF THE DEVELOPMENT ON THE HISTORIC ENVIRONMENT, THE GREEN BELT, AGRICULTURAL LAND, AND / OR LOCAL COUNTRYSIDE DESIGNATIONS, WHEREVER RELEVANT.
   
10.5.69 Policy OL12 provides the basic development control policy for considering proposals for waste disposal. As with mineral extraction the acceptability of any proposals will be dependant on the acceptability of the social and environmental impact on the locality. In many instances proposals for waste disposal will also be subject to Green Belt Policies OL1 and OL2.
10.5.70 Factors which will be taken into account in accordance with this policy will be environmental factors, such as the proximity of the site to housing, and the effect of proposals on local visual amenities and landscape, both during tipping operations and after restoration. The current and potential use of the site will also be a consideration. Waste disposal, especially landfill, is not acceptable in sites which are of local value in their existing state, or are capable of being put to a use which will benefit the locality. Examples are railway cuttings which serve, or could be developed to serve, as footpaths, or quarries which could provide for recreation facilities. In some cases such sites could, alternatively, provide a suitable re-location area for "unneighbourly" industrial or storage uses. However, it is recognised that in some cases waste disposal can be used to reclaim derelict sites earlier than would otherwise be possible, and it can provide a means of achieving environmental restoration following mineral extraction.
 
 
OL13 PROPOSALS ACCEPTABLE UNDER POLICY OL12 WILL BE SUBJECT TO CONDITIONS AND, WHERE APPROPRIATE, LEGAL AGREEMENTS AND / OR PLANNING OBLIGATIONS MAY BE ENTERED INTO WHICH MAKE PROVISION FOR:
  i) SAFEGUARDING SIGNIFICANT NATURAL FEATURES;
  ii) ADEQUATE ADVANCE SCREENING;
  iii) SATISFACTORY TRANSPORT AND ACCESS PROPOSALS;
  iv) A FULLY DETAILED AND PHASED SCHEME OF LAND RESTORATION, INCLUDING A SCHEME FOR AFTERCARE, LANDSCAPING, MAINTENANCE AND AFTERUSE LINKED TO A PERMITTED PERIOD OF OPERATION;
  v) THE DESIGN, MAINTENANCE AND ARRANGEMENTS FOR THE CONTROL OF LEACHATE AND FOR LANDFILL GAS ARISING FROM WASTE DISPOSAL SITES DURING TIPPING OPERATIONS AND AFTER COMPLETION OF TIPPING;
  vi) THE MINIMIZING OF OTHER ENVIRONMENTAL RISKS AND PROBLEMS.
   
10.5.71 Where proposals for waste disposal are considered acceptable under Policy OL12 they will also be subject to Policy OL13, which will allow the operational details of the proposals to be controlled.
10.5.72 The criteria incorporated in Policy OL13 are considered essential by the Council to ensure waste disposal operations take place with a minimum of disruption to local communities and the environment, and that the proper restoration and after-use of sites is achieved. This policy should be considered in conjunction with the Environment policies which provide the substance for the conditions and legal agreements.
 
 
Renewable Energy
10.5.73 In response to concerns over global warming, emission of greenhouse gasses and acid rain pollution, the Government is encouraging energy efficiency and the use of alternative energy sources. The most sustainable option is to make better use of renewable sources such as wind, solar, wood, waste and crops. Renewable energy offers greater diversity and self-sufficiency of supply. Renewable technologies are now approaching full market competitiveness with fossil fuels.
10.5.74 Many renewable energy projects have unusual siting requirements reflecting the particular locations in which renewable resources arise, including hill tops, rivers and farm land. Development for renewable energy will be considered in a favourable context, subject to protecting amenity and the quality of the environment and landscape.
 
 
OL20 PROPOSALS FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES WILL BE PERMITTED WHERE IT CAN BE DEMONSTRATED THAT EFFECTS ON:
  i) THE LOCAL COMMUNITY;
  ii) THE LANDSCAPE OF THE AREA;
  iii) THE ECOLOGY OF THE AREA;
  iv) EXISTING AND PROPOSED LAND USES IN THE LOCALITY;
  ARE ACCEPTABLE.
 
10.5.75 The Council may, when considering proposals for the development of renewable energy sources adopt a more flexible approach to Planning and Highways standards, where adherence to them would be to the detriment of the wider environmental benefits of the development of renewable energy. Where proposals are considered acceptable under Policy OL20 they will be subject to other environmental and open land policies within the UDP.
 
 
Supplementary Planning Guidance
10.5.76 A series of Development Control Guidelines have been approved by the Council to further assist the control of development. These guidelines are listed in Appendix 1 and they will constitute material considerations in the determination of planning applications. Here attention is drawn to the Green Plan for Wakefield District.
 
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