Councillors put ”sustainability at heart of new developments”

Councillors at Lewes District Council have agreed to implement three new technical advice notes for developers that put a much greater focus on issues of sustainability, both in the planning phase of construction and when work is underway on site.

The planning technical advice notes (TAN) cover sustainability, the circular economy and biodiversity and will apply to any new homes or commercial development, large or small, in the district.

Councillor Emily O’Brien (pictured), Cabinet Member for Planning and Infrastructure, said: “With construction, demolition and excavation waste accounting for 51% of the £1.7 million tonnes of solid waste generated in East Sussex and Brighton & Hove each year, it is essential that developers and other planning applicants achieve greater sustainability in new developments.

“The built environment is responsible for a massive 40% of our carbon footprint – I don’t think anyone should need any more evidence than that to recognise the urgent need to put sustainability at the heart of all new developments.”

  • The Sustainability TAN requires planning applicants to complete and submit a checklist to show whether sustainability issues have been given consideration in their proposal
  • The Circular Economy TAN encourages a circular economy approach to be taken in development proposals, where building materials are recovered, reused and recycled
  • The Biodiversity Net Gain TAN places a duty on developers to ensure habitats for wildlife are enhanced and that development delivers a minimum 10% biodiversity net gain.

The council is also supporting the Town & Council Planning Association’s (TCPA) Healthy Homes Principles, which establish fundamental principles all new homes and neighbourhoods should follow to secure their residents’ health and wellbeing.

Councillor O’Brien added: “This is yet more evidence of our determination to not only become net zero carbon and fully climate resilient by 2030, but to also create homes and communities that enhance life opportunities, not damage them. We know that where you live has a profound effect on physical and mental health and also economic opportunities. The superb campaign by the TCPA aims to put into law principles that will put an end to mediocre and poorly designed property and establish a simple framework for healthy place making in the future.”