News story

Cutting red tape to give a green light for greener development

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Simplifying the system for assessing the impact of development on the local environment.

The new government is taking swift action to shorten and simplify environmental regulations so it is easier for developers to green-proof their building projects, Communities Secretary Eric Pickles said today (9 August 2010).

Councils and businesses will benefit from a simpler system for assessing the impact of development on the local environment, and will avoid unnecessary repetition of work during the planning process for multi-stage projects, saving over £200 million a year.

New proposals published for consultation today will revoke 4 sets of rules about Environmental Impact Assessments, and replace them with one streamlined and user-friendly set of regulations.

The complex guidance for carrying out assessments will also be scrapped and replaced so it is clear and concise, ensuring developers can easily measure and minimise any negative effects their projects will have on the environment.

Communities Secretary Eric Pickles said:

“I want it to be as easy as possible for councils and businesses to reduce any negative impact new development may have on the environment. That’s why we’re scrapping this Byzantine collection of regulations and replacing them with one simple and concise set of guidelines for environmental assessments.

“It is not enough for regulations to have good intentions - they also need to be user-friendly. So we’ve acted quickly to ensure the environment can be protected, without overwhelming everyone with red tape.”