Islington Environmental Alliance
Actions by the Council planning team following our initiatives
18 April 2023
In several papers on different topics we have been encouraging the Council to remove from the urban planning system obstacles to improving buildings in response to climate change. The Council planning team is now putting in place plans that respond to some of our papers and could help to make retrofitting easier.
Among the papers from our members is the Climate Emergency Conservation Area Toolkit. This provides up-to-date information and advice about retrofitting buildings in conservation areas to balance the environment and heritage objectives. It examines in detail practices and products for roof extensions, rear projections, solar panels, windows, external walls and shopfronts. Much of it is relevant throughout the UK, so it has been distributed and purchased widely.
The petition on adjusting the Council planning policy for conservation areas and listed buildings to take account of climate change has attracted over 2000 signatures of Islington residents. It calls for allowing the sensitive installation of solar panels, heat pumps and double glazing on grade II listed and conservation area houses. Having reached the threshold of 2000 signatures, it was presented on 2 March 2023 and is scheduled for debate at the Council meeting likely to be on 13 July 2023.
Besides these, we have:
Put forward proposals for the Net Zero Carbon Supplementary Planning Document.
Made comments on and amendments to the Cross Street Conservation Area Design Guidelines,
Summarised comprehensively the planning constraints on retrofitting buildings for climate change.
Made comments on and amendments to the Council Solar Panel Guidance.
The Council planning team is inviting residents to offer their proposals on what should be in the Net Zero Carbon Supplementary Planning Document, in meetings from 6 June 2023 onwards. The Supplementary Planning Document itself will not be available for some time
The planning team has now developed its own Net Zero and Sustainability Planning Guidance for Households largely aligned with our summary of the planning constraints on retrofitting buildings. It is also offering free planning advice on whether potential planning applications will satisfy those constraints.