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UK Government cuts red tape for onshore wind

The UK government has simplified planning rules for onshore wind projects in England, removing specific hurdles previously faced by these developments

The UK Government has announced significant revisions to planning policies governing onshore wind projects in England, effectively eliminating specific regulatory obstacles that have historically complicated their approval process.

These changes, detailed in the updated National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF), aim to level the playing field for onshore wind alongside other forms of energy development.

As of 8th July 2024, onshore wind applications will no longer be subject to unique planning tests previously mandated under footnotes 57 and 58 of the NPPF.

This move is part of a broader strategy to enhance energy independence, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and foster local community engagement in renewable energy initiatives.

The government plans to present these amendments to Parliament on 18th July, coinciding with the State Opening and intends to further bolster support for renewable energy through forthcoming updates to the NPPF and consultation on integrating large onshore wind projects into the Nationally Significant Infrastructure Project regime.

Zoisa North-Bond, Chief Executive Officer of Octopus Energy Generation, commented: “Streamlining planning reform and fast-tracking shovel-ready renewables are key to boosting UK-wide investments in homegrown green power.

“We’ve had over 30,000 requests from local communities for our ‘Fan Club’ scheme – and with these reforms, we’ll be able to build onshore wind turbines quickly where people want them. 

“As a next step, the government should enable zonal pricing for energy. This would slash bills immediately across the country and unlock investment in new renewables where demand is high.”

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