Sustainability Appraisal - Supplementary Report [EXAM 115/115B]

Ended on the 12th August 2020
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Chapter 7


7.1 The SEA Regulations require that "the responsible authority shall monitor the significant environmental effects of the implementation of each plan or programme with the purpose of identifying unforeseen adverse effects at an early stage and being able to undertake appropriate remedial action" and that the environmental report should provide information on "a description of the measures envisaged concerning monitoring". Monitoring proposals should be designed to provide information that can be used to highlight specific issues and significant effects, and which could help decision-making.

7.2 Monitoring should be focused on the significant sustainability effects that may give rise to irreversible damage (with a view to identifying trends before such damage is caused) and the significant effects where there is uncertainty in the SA and where monitoring would enable preventative or mitigation measures to be taken. In line with a precautionary approach, all SA objectives have been included in the monitoring framework including those where potential but uncertain significant effects have been identified.

7.3 Table 7.1 overleaf sets out a number of suggested indicators for monitoring the potential sustainability effects of the Local Plan. Where possible, this draws from the indicators set out in the Council's most recent Annual Monitoring Report[31].

7.4 The data used for monitoring in many cases will be provided by outside bodies. Information collected by other organisations (e.g. the Environment Agency) can also be used as a source of indicators. It is therefore recommended that the Council continues the dialogue with statutory environmental consultees and other stakeholders that has already been commenced and works with them to agree the relevant sustainability effects to be monitored and to obtain information that is appropriate, up to date and reliable.

Table 7.1: Proposed Monitoring Framework

SA objectives

Proposed monitoring indicators

  1. Housing

- Net dwelling completions

- Affordable housing completions

- Net additional Gypsy and Traveller pitches

  1. Communities

- Net additional floorspace for town centre uses (by town centre)

- Town centre vacancy rates

- Retail vacancy rates

- The number of new sport and leisure facilities provided

  1. Services & facilities

- Percentage of new residential development within 30 minutes public transport time of a GP, hospital, primary and secondary school, employment and a major health centre

- Number of local shops, facilities and services provided/lost in villages (square metres)

  1. Employment

- Total amount of additional employment floorspace completed (by use class)

- Employment rate for the working age population

- Jobs created – Annual Business Index

  1. Health & equality

- Number of new sport and leisure facilities provided

- Net loss/gain of Important Open Space

  1. Highways & air quality

- Number of AQMAs declared in Central Bedfordshire

  1. Sustainable transport

- Kilometres of cycle route completed

- Number of new travel plans completed

  1. Energy & climate change

- Permissions granted for renewable energy generating developments

- Per capita reduction in CO2emissions in the Local Authority area

  1. Water resources & quality

- Percentage of new development incorporating water efficiency measures

  1. Flood risk

- Number of planning permissions granted contrary to Environment Agency advice on flooding and water quality grounds

  1. Soil

- Percentage of new dwellings built on previously developed land

- Total amount of additional employment floorspace completed on previously developed land

  1. Biodiversity and geodiversity

- Number of environmental designations by type

- Number of Tree Preservation Orders (TPOs)

- Area of Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs) in favourable condition

  1. Landscape

- Planning permissions within the AONB

  1. Historic environment

- Number of listed buildings

- Number of Conservation Areas

- The number of Listed Buildings removed from or added to the statutory lost or at-risk register

[31] Authority Monitoring Report 2018/19

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