City Corporation to consult on world-leading embodied carbon planning guidance

The City of London Corporation has today (7 June) agreed to consult on a pioneering new draft Planning Advice Note looking at carbon considerations in major development schemes.

The ‘Whole Lifecycle Carbon Optioneering’ guidance will assist with pre-application procedures and discussions, giving clarity of purpose to applicants and a framework to define reduced carbon footprints.

It will be incorporated into a formal ‘Sustainability Supplementary Planning Document’ which will address issues such as carbon reduction, energy efficiency and climate resilience in the commercial built environment. A draft of the wider guidance is expected to be considered by the City Corporation’s Planning and Transportation Committee later in the year.

The initial draft Planning Advice Note was approved today and will be consulted on for six weeks from mid-June.

The draft Planning Advice Note includes:

  • An expectation that developers assess the whole life-cycle carbon emission impacts of a scheme at an early stage (before designs are finalised), appoint experienced consultants and enter into discussions with City Corporation planning officers.
  • An expectation that developers consider the whole life-cycle carbon emissions for a range of options, such as minor refurbishment, major refurbishment, extension and new build.
  • A proposed method of consistent reporting of whole life-cycle carbon emissions in the commercial built environment, which is in line with the GLA’s adopted guidance.
  • A dashboard to increase understanding of information about carbon emissions to inform decisions taken by the City Corporation’s Planning and Transportation Committee.

Chairman of the City of London Corporation’s Planning and Transportation Committee, Shravan Joshi, said:

“This new guidance comes at a key moment for the development industry as the global debate surrounding the carbon impact of refurbishment versus redevelopment continues to heat up. It is in response to a sector wide need for clarity and leadership in this evolving area of work around sustainability.

“When it is adopted, this Planning Advice Note will provide clarity on what we, as a planning authority, expect from developers behind major Square Mile development.”

The draft Planning Advice Note supports the City of London Corporation’s Climate Action Strategy which sets out bold goals including a net-zero Square Mile by 2040.

The note, produced in collaboration with Hilson Moran, will be published on the City Corporation website for consultation shortly.

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