29 September 2011
Six bodies representing a range of environmental
professions have united in a joint letter to HM Planning Minister, Greg Clarke MP, expressing their concern
over the current planning reform proposals from Government.
The Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management, Royal Meteorological Society, Institute of
Ecology and Environmental Management, Institution of Environmental Sciences, Arboricultural Association and
Institute of Fisheries Management challenged the proposals under the draft National Planning Policy Framework
as they currently stand.
The signatories urged the Government to exercise due caution in rushing out the reforms and in particular to
re-examine its use of the term 'Sustainable Development', which they consider to be a 'gross
mis-representation' of the principle. They also questioned the 'draconian' rationalisation of planning
The group considers that the Government’s proposals represent a capitulation to a powerful commercial lobby
group and will result in a 'builders' charter' to develop at the cost of wider local and environmental
interests as opposed to considering economic, social and environmental factors in a balanced manner which
respects the principles and recognised definitions of Sustainable Development, and the best interests of all in