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Northern Ireland Environment Link Logo
 

News

 

Events

 

Nov 2017 right left

  
01
02

Storytelling by the Fire

Friday 3rd November
Florence Court
Adult £15

Autumn Garden Walk

Saturday 4th November
Mount Stewart
Adult £10, Child £5

Jo’s Walks — The building of Murlough: Part 1

Saturday 4th November
Murlough NNR, Keel Point, Dundrum entrance
No Charge, Donations Welcome

05

Changing Landscapes: Protecting the environment in a new Europe

Monday 6th November
Dynamic Earth, Edinburgh

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10

BTO NI Conference

Saturday 11th November
Lough Neagh Discovery Centre
see above

Path Maintenance & Scrub Control

Sunday 12th November
Bog Meadows Nature Reserve Belfast
Free

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Innovative Learning using GIS, ICT and Fieldwork

Saturday 18th November
Tollymore Field Studies Centre
£45 including lunch

Have a go: Dry Stone Walling

Saturday 18th November
Strangford Lough
No Charge, Donations Welcome

Creative Writing Workshop

Saturday 18th November
Mount Stewart
£19

Family Festive Film Fun

Saturday 18th November
Rowallane Garden
Normal Admission, Members Free

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NIEA Conference on Water Framework Directive – Future Partnerships

Saturday 25th November
College of Agriculture Food & Rural Enterprise (CAFRE), Greenmount Campus, 45 Tirgracy Road, Antrim BT41 4PS
Free

Crafted

Saturday 25th November
Castle Ward
Normal Admission, Members Free

Hedge Maintenance

Sunday 26th November
Gilford Castle, Gilford Co Armagh
Free

World Forum on Natural Capital 2017

Monday 27th November
Edinburgh International Conference Centre, Edinburgh
See website for details

Scrub Clearance & Conserving the Cryptic Wood White Butterfly

Monday 27th November
Lough Neagh Discovery Centre
Free

28

Action Renewables Energy Association – Hydrogen Economy Seminar

Wednesday 29th November
The Doyen, 829 Lisburn Road, Belfast BT9 7GY
See website for details

30
  

Planning

The DoE began a major programme to reform the Northern Ireland planning system with the introduction of the Planning (NI) Act 2011. The 2011 Act gives effect to the whole process of local government reform which includes the transfer of the majority of planning functions and decision making responsibilities to district councils in 2015.

Planning

Planning policy in Northern Ireland is also undergoing significant change. Policy Planning Statements (PPSs) contain policies on land use and other planning matters and currently set out the main considerations to be taken into account in reaching planning decisions on proposals for development in Northern Ireland. These statements are being consolidated into a single Strategic Planning Policy Statement (SPPS) for Northern Ireland in 2014. This document will outline the purpose of the planning system within NI, the core principles of the system, the nature of Local Development Plans, and guidance on planning decisions affecting, for example, built heritage, coastal development, natural heritage.  Following the production of the SPPS there will be significant supplementary guidance produced to guide local councils in planning decision making.

Each new council area will prepare Local Development Plans, to be produced as soon as possible, taking into account the content of the SPPS, the Regional Development Strategy, the Sustainable Development Strategy for Northern Ireland and any other relevant strategic documents.

NIEL provides a secretariat service to the Planning Task Force which works towards a more effective and accountable planning framework that will facilitate sustainable development. The Task Force regularly meets with planning representatives and actively engages with the Department of Environment on planning policy development and the programme of planning reform.

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In 2012/13, the average processing times for Major, Intermediate and Minor categories of planning application has reduced by four, two and three weeks respectively.

Renewable energy applications decisions have increased by 90% from 2011. Almost nine in 10 renewable energy applications were approved in 2012/13.

In the period 1 April 2008 to end of 31 December 2012, a total of 79,568 planning applications have been approved out of a total 85,728 decisions representing a 92.8% approval rate

Applications for residential development have continued to fall, down by 16% from 1,825 in quarter two of 2011/12 to 1,528 in quarter two of 2012/13.

Overall, 93% of decisions issued for planning applications in quarter two of 2012/13 were approved.

In urban areas, the number of residential applications fell from 738 to 587 (20%) and in rural areas the number fell from 1,087 to 941 (13%). Rural applications made up over three fifths (62%) of residential applications.

The vast majority (75%) of renewable energy applications received in quarter two of 2012/13 were for single wind turbines.

The number of decisions issued against renewable energy applications doubled from 88 in the second quarter of 2011/12 to 177 in the second quarter of 2012/13.

Over nine tenths (92%) of renewable energy applications were approved.

Powers that are currently proposed for transfer to Local Government include urban regeneration from DSD; local economic development and tourism from DETI; part of the responsibility for roads from the DRD; local sports facilities from DCAL; and rural development from DARD.