Glossary of planning terms

Abstraction licence - a licence to permit the removal of water, either permanently or temporarily, from a surface or underground source.

Abstraction point - the point at which water is removed from a source.

AGLV – see Area of Great Landscape Value.

Air Quality Management Area – (AQMA) an area designated by a local authority for action, based upon a prediction that national Air Quality Objectives are not likely to be achieved in that area.

Ancillary development - development associated with the working of minerals, for example a processing plant

Annual Monitoring Report (AMR) – the annual monitoring report assesses the implementation of the Minerals and Waste Development Scheme and the extent to which policies are being implemented. It is part of the Minerals and Waste Development Framework.

AONB – see Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Annual productive capacity - the amount of a mineral that can be obtained annually.

AQMA – see Air Quality Management Area.

Aquifer – underground rock layers where groundwater flows through and is stored, either in the cracks and openings of the rock or between individual rock grains.

Area Action Plan Development Plan Documents - a planning document for areas of change or conservation for example Slyfield Area Action Plan. These Action Plans have the status of Development Plan Documents.

Area of Great Landscape Value - (AGLV) an area designated by the County Council as being of high visual quality worthy of conservation.

Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty - (AONB) an area designated under the National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act 1949 as being of national importance for its natural beauty, which should be conserved and enhanced. In Surrey there are two designated areas, the Surrey Hills and part of the High Weald.

Areas of search – areas where knowledge of mineral resources may be less certain, but within which planning permission for particular sites could be granted to meet any shortfall in supply if suitable applications are made.

Baffle – term used in the Minerals Plan to mean a barrier containing aggregate that forms a breakwater in the Queen Mary Reservoir.

Best Practicable Environmental Option - (BPEO) "The outcome of a systematic, consultative and decision-making procedure, which emphasizes the protection and conservation of the environment across land, air and water. The BPEO procedure establishes, for a given set of objectives, the option that provides the most benefits or the least damage to the environment as a whole, at acceptable cost, in the long-term as well as the short-term." (The Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution).

Blight – the depressing effect on an area or property caused by potential development proposals.

Borrow pit – a site for the excavation of aggregate or other bulk filling materials over a limited period, solely for use in a specific major construction project, and which will normally be close to the project. Most commonly used in road construction.

BPEO - see Best Practicable Environmental Option.

Bulk fill – material used in construction or land reclamation works to fill in holes for ground levelling.

Bund -an embankment used either to screen a site from view or to help reduce the impacts of noise arising from a development.

Containment engineering – landfill site design, which ensures that materials are contained within designated areas and that no leakage of liquids or gases from the site occurs.

Core Strategy Development Plan Documents - set out the long-term spatial vision for the local planning authority area, the spatial objectives and strategic policies to deliver the vision.

Development Plan Documents (DPDs) – these are spatial planning documents that are subject to independent examination, and together with the relevant Regional Spatial Strategy, will form the development plan for a local authority. They can include a core strategy, site-specific allocations of land, area action plans and generic development control policies.

Dewatering– process of artificially lowering the groundwater level around and beneath a mineral extraction area, and creating dry, stable and safe working conditions.

Dilute and disperse landfill – a landfill site, which has no engineered base or liner.

Dormant sites - in accordance with the Planning & Compensation Act 1991 or the Environment Act 1995, this term defines a site where planning permission for mineral extraction was granted and implemented prior to, and on or subsequent to, the 1 July 1948 and respectively, at which no mineral working has been carried out to any substantial extent, on or under the site in the period preceding 1 May 1991 (Planning & Compensation Act 1991) or at any time in the period 22 February 1982 to ending 6 June 1995 (Environment Act 1995). It is unlawful to carry out mineral working on a dormant site until full modern planning conditions have been approved by the relevant Minerals Planning Authority.

Drawdown – lowering of the water table in a specific area by removal of significant amounts of groundwater.

Dredger – machinery used to obtain minerals from the bottom of a body of water.

Ecology – the study of living organisms in relation to their surroundings.

EIA – see Environmental Impact Assessment.

Environmental Impact Assessment – (EIA) a process of assessing the environmental implications of a proposal. A statutory requirement when the proposed development is of a type listed in Schedule I to the Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) (England & Wales) Regulations 1999, or is of a type listed in Schedule 2 and is likely to have significant effects on the environment.

Foundry industry – industry associated with the manufacture of metals.

Generic Development Control Policy Development Plan Documents- are a suite of criteria based policies that are required to ensure that all development within the area meets the spatial vision and spatial objectives set out in the core strategy.

Groundwater – water stored underground in areas of rock known as aquifers. Groundwater supports rivers, lakes and wetlands, and is an essential source of fresh water for public water supply, industry, agriculture and rural communities.

Groundwater contours - a line on a plan that joins up areas of equal groundwater levels.

High-quality aggregates – pure aggregates such as sand and gravel, primarily used in the construction industry for manufacturing products such as asphalt and concrete.

Hydrological constraints – limits placed on mineral extraction as a result of the outcome of hydrological studies.

Hydrological risk assessment – analysis of the impact of mineral workings on the water environment.

Hydrology – the study of the way water behaves within an area.

Inert material – material that will not physically or chemically react or biodegrade.

Intake channel – a water channel taking surplus water from a river to a reservoir.

Issues and Options – the early production stage of the preparation of Development Plan Documents and will involve consultation to meet the requirements of Regulation 25 of the Town and County Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004.

Intake channel – a water channel taking surplus water from a river to a reservoir.

Landbank – a stock of land with planning permission for the winning and working of minerals.

Land-won – mineral excavated from land.

LDF– see Local Development Framework.

Lined landfill – landfill sites where a material is used to line the base and sides of the hole to prevent contaminated liquids or landfill gas from seeping into the surrounding ground.

LNR – see Local Nature Reserve.

Local Development Documents (LDDs) – this is a collective term used in the new Planning Act for Development Plan Documents, Supplementary Planning Documents and the Statement of Community Involvement.

Local Development Framework – (LDF) the portfolio of local development documents. It consists of Development Plan Documents, Supplementary Planning Documents, A Statement of Community Involvement, the Local Development Scheme and the Annual Monitoring Reports. Together these documents provide the framework for delivering the spatial planning strategy for a local authority area. In Surrey the portfolio of documents, which deliver the spatial strategy for minerals and waste in the County is known as the Minerals and Waste Development Framework (MWDF).

Local Development Scheme – sets out the programme for preparing Local Development Documents. All authorities must submit their scheme to the Secretary of State for approval within six months of commencement of the Act. In Surrey the scheme for minerals and waste is known as the Minerals and Waste Development Scheme (MWDS).

Local Nature Reserve – an area designated by local authorities, in consultation with English Nature, under the National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act 1949, to provide opportunities for educational use and public enjoyment, in addition to protecting wildlife or geological and physiographical features of special interest.

Low permeability barrier – a landfill site lining which restricts the amount of liquids able to pass through it.

Lower-grade aggregates - aggregates that are of more mixed quality and less pure.

Machine trial trenching – method of obtaining archaeological information on a site to discover whether a full archaeological assessment is needed.

Marine-dredged aggregates – sand and gravel which is suction dredged from the sea bed.

Minerals Planning Authority - The authority responsible for planning for minerals development. For the county of Surrey it is Surrey County Council.

MPA – see Minerals Planning Authority.

MTPA – million tonnes per annum.

National Nature Reserve – a Site of Special Scientific Interest which is particularly important in national terms and is owned, leased or managed by agreement with English Nature.

NNR – see National Nature Reserve.

Non-aggregates – Minerals which are not used as aggregates. In Surrey these are clay, chalk, oil, gas and fullers earth.

Non-working sites – sites where there is no mineral extraction currently taking place.

Overburden - material overlying the mineral deposit, which must be stripped prior to extraction of the mineral, and which can be used in the restoration of a site.

Overhead gantry – a structure for conveying material above and across a road.

Permitted reserves – mineral reserves with planning permission for future extraction.

Preferred areas – areas of known mineral resources where planning permission might reasonably be anticipated, (subject to the usual tests of environmental acceptability) either because of proven borehole information or because it is within a geographically proven area.

Preferred Options Stage – Part of the production stage of the preparation of development plan documents. This stage involves a formal six week public consultation.

Primary aggregates – naturally occurring bulk minerals used in construction, which are dug from the ground (in Surrey these are soft sand, sharp sand and gravel).

Primary route network – network of regionally significant routes, or routes for longer distance travel.

Qualitative monitoring – a checking of progress against non-numerical targets.

Quantitative monitoring – a checking of progress against numerical targets.

Ramsar site – a wetland site of international importance (especially as a waterfowl habitat) designated by the Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

Recycled aggregates – aggregates produced from waste material such as construction and demolition waste.

Regional Spatial Strategy – (RSS) a statutory document prepared by the Regional Assembly, setting out regionally specific policies to guide development. With the Minerals Local Development Framework, it will provide the framework for minerals planning in Surrey

Regionally Important Geological or Geomorphological site– (RIG) an area of earth science interest which is of county significance.

Reserves – mineral deposits which have been tested to establish the quality and quantity of material present, and which could be economically and technically exploited.

Restoration – process of returning a site or area to its former or future use following mineral extraction. It includes processes that take place before and during mineral extraction (stripping and protection of soils) and operations after extraction up until the after-use is established on the site.

RIG – see Regionally Important Geological or Geomorphological site.

RSS – see Regional Spatial Strategy.

SA – see Sustainability Appraisal.

SAC – see Special Area of Conservation.

SAM – see Scheduled Ancient Monument.

SANGS - Suitable Alternative Natural Green Space.

Scheduled Ancient Monument – (SAM) an archaeological site of national importance protected under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended by the National Heritage Act.

SCI – see Statement of Community Involvement.

SEA – see Strategic Environmental Assessment.

Secondary aggregates – materials usable as aggregate, which are the by-products of other processes (for example colliery waste, blast furnace slag and slate waste).

Site of Nature Conservation Importance – (SNCI) an area (non-statutory) designated by the Surrey Nature Conservation Liaison Group as being of county or regional wildlife value.

Site of Special Scientific Interest – an area of land or water statutorily notified by English Nature under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, on account of its flora, fauna, geological or physiographical features. All NNRs, Ramsar sites, SACs and SPAs have also been notified as SSSIs.

Site Specific Allocations Development Plan Documents - are allocations of sites for specific uses or developments, for example site-specific allocations of primary aggregates.

SNCI – see Site of Nature Conservation Importance.

Source protection zones -zones identified by the Environment Agency to protect groundwater (especially public water supply) from developments that may damage its quality.

SPA – see Special Protection Area.

Specific sites – new sites identified through the minerals plan or land with planning permission for mineral extraction.

Special Area of Conservation – (SAC) a Site of Special Scientific Interest additionally designated a Special Area of Conservation under the European Union's Habitats Directive 1992 (92/43/EEC), because of the need to maintain or restore priority natural habitats and wild species. Together with SPAs, SACs comprise the European Union's 'Natura 2000' network of habitats of pan-European nature conservation importance.

Special Protection Area – (SPA) a Site of Special Scientific Interest additionally designated a Special Protection Area under the European Union's Directive (79/409/EEC) on the Conservation of Wild Birds 1979, because of the need to protect threatened birds, their eggs, nests and habitats.

SSSI – see Site of Special Scientific Interest.

Stand-off – an area adjoining a minerals operation, to remain generally undisturbed to give protection to properties and other features sensitive to disturbance.

Stakeholder – an individual or organisation with a particular interest in a process.

Statement of Community Involvement– (SCI) sets out the standards, which authorities will achieve with regard to involving local communities in the preparation of local development documents and development control decisions. The SCI is not a development plan document, but will be subject to independent examination.

Statutory Development Plan - an authority's development plan consists of the relevant Regional Spatial Strategy and Development Plan Documents. In Surrey there will be a Minerals Development Plan and a Waste Development Plan.

Sterilisation of mineral resources - permanent development on a site or area which would prevent the working of mineral resources.

Strategic Environmental Assessment – a strategic environmental assessment is required by European and UK law, and is a way of systematically identifying and evaluating the impacts that a plan is likely to have on the environment. The aim is to provide information – in the form of an Environmental Report – that can be used to enable decision makers to take account of the environment and minimise the risk of the plan causing significant environmental damage. Government guidance advises that where a plan requires both strategic environmental assessment and sustainability appraisal, that the former process should be integrated into the latter one.

Strategic level – a strategy based policy or decision that operates at a higher level than a policy or decision created to deal with local and day-to-day issues.

Supplementary Plan Documents – (SPDs) provide supplementary information in respect of the policies in Development Plan Documents. They do not form part of the development plan and are not subject to independent examination.

Sustainability Appraisal – (SA) a sustainability appraisal is required by UK law, and is a way of systematically identifying and evaluating the contribution that a plan is likely to make to the sustainable development on an area. The aim is to provide information – in the form of an Initial Sustainability Appraisal Report and a Formal Sustainability Appraisal Report – that can be used to enable decision makers to enhance the performance of the plan with respect to its contribution to the sustainable development of the area affected.

TIA – see Transport Impact Assessment.

Test pitting – a pit dug to obtain archaeological information from the site when it is not yet known.

Transport Impact Assessment – a process of assessing the transport impacts of a proposal.

Turbidity - a cloudiness or haziness in water or other liquid caused by particles that are too small to be seen without magnification.

Unsaturated zone – the underground zone above the water table where the soil pores and fissures that hold groundwater are not totally saturated with water.

Unworked margin – strip of land along the edges of a mineral extraction site, which is left untouched.

Windfall – a site that becomes available for development as a result of planning permission on land that has not been previously identified within a development plan.

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