Comment on final stage of minerals plan
Published Thursday, 27 January 2011
The public are being asked to have their say on the new minerals local development plan.
From today a further consultation exercise is being undertaken to allow the public to look at and comment on the new Minerals Local Development Plan (MLDP).
Over the next six weeks anyone can give their feedback to the plan which replaces the existing Minerals Local Plan (MLP) which has been in place since September 2002.
The MLDP also reflects new planning legislation introduced by the Planning (Scotland) Act 2006. Following committee approval at the end of last year, the Planning Service set up this period of consultation which, following a possible public examination and the seeking of committee approval, it is hoped the new MLDP could be adopted by early 2012.
This consultation period follows on from a detailed consultation with local communities and other interested parties in April and May last year with the feedback helping with the preparation of a Main Issues Report.
The report addressed key concerns and views of all parties, along with the council's 'preferred option' of how to deal with each of these main issues in the final development plan, including identifying the preferred 'spatial' strategy for mineral extraction safeguarding mineral resources, minimising effects on people and communities, protecting the environment and ensuring excellence in working practices and restoration.
A total of 315 comments were received during that period and have been considered in the preparation of the Proposed Plan.
Councillor Graham Scott, the chair of the council's Planning Committee, said: "We are grateful to the communities in and around Strathaven, Douglas and Symington who have already been involved in the process, along with industry operators and other key consultees.
"The feedback gained through these sessions has got us this far and now we are keen to take the process to its next stage with further public consultation. We want people to tell us their views on mineral developments.
"The council is well aware of the impacts that mineral extraction can have on local communities both positive and negative.
"On the positive side, the creation of jobs and the boost to the local economy is of importance, particularly when the mineral to be extracted has a high value and is sought after in national or global markets.
"However, on the other hand, mineral extraction can be controversial, particularly when communities are concerned about the impacts of extraction on their quality of life."
The MLDP can be viewed and comments made online on the planning consultation portal. You can also find a link to the consultation on the Development plans page where you can also read more background information including the responses received on the main issues report. Representation forms are also available and hard copies of the report can be inspected at your local library, Q&A and planning offices.