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Coal mining legacy problems

There are many old coal workings in South Lanarkshire, with the possibility that new development may disturb old mine workings, leading to subsidence or damage to buildings or their occupants.

Potential problems can include:
• collapse of shallow coal mine workings
• collapse of, or risk of entry into, mine entries (shafts and adits)
• gas emissions from coal mines including methane and carbon dioxide
• spontaneous combustion or ignition of coal which may lead to the production of carbon monoxide
• transmission of gases into adjacent properties from underground sources through ground fractures
• coal mining subsidence
• water emissions from coal mine workings

The public safety risks linked to these can now be taken into account through the planning application process in consultation with the Coal Authority.

The Coal Authority has divided the coalfield into two areas; Development high risk and Development low risk.  We will check if your development site lies within any of the risk areas as part of the application process and will let you know, as this may mean that you have to submit additional information to us. If you want to check if your site lies within a High or Low Risk area, or is located off the coalfield, you can use the interactive map viewer on the Coal Authority's website.

Coal mining risk assessment explains what it means if your site is located in one of the risk areas.
You can get more information from our Planning and Building Standards office or the Coal Authority .