Sustainable Development: the Merton Rule

“The Merton Rule is the groundbreaking planning policy, pioneered by the London Borough of Merton, which requires the use of renewable energy onsite to reduce annual carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in the built environment. Hundreds of local authorities look set to follow Merton’s lead, which will impact all new major development projects throughout the UK.”

The policy was adopted in October 2003 in the London Borough of Merton’s Unitary Development Plan.

A Unitary Development Plan - for those of you who aren’t in the know! - is a statutory document ( written by the Local Authority ) which sets out the strategic framework for the use of land and detailed policies and specific proposals for development. For a list of other Boroughs which have now adopted this policy, check out the Merton Rule page, which is the definitive resourcce promoting planning policies for renewable energy. There are also case studies demonstrating how renewable energy systems can be incorporated into development.

Full text of the policy reads:

” The Council will encourage the energy efficient design of buildings and their layout and orientation on site. All new non-residential developments above a threshold of 1,000 sq metres will be expected to incorporate renewable energy production equipment to provide at least 10% of predicted energy requirements. The use of sustainable building materials and the re-use of materials will also be encouraged. As will the use of recycled aggregates in the construction of buildings. This will be subject to the impact on the amenity of the local environment, taking into account the existing character of the area..”

thanks to uniteddiversity.com for highlighting this.

Comments

  1. Daniel wrote:

    Thank you Sonia for your comments.
    You are not related to my colleague Angela and found me through her?

    In any case how wonderful you are thinking along some of the same lines. You have aremarkable blog. Don’t know where to start reading and find the time. I ‘ll keep an eye on your blog!

  2. sonia wrote:

    Cheers Daniel! Hmm..no i don’t think i am acquainted with the lovely Angela - yet! I’ve added a link to you and will be keeping up with your blog too.

  3. Holly wrote:

    Hi Sonia,
    Very interesting article, The ‘Merton Rule’ is the groundbreaking planning policy, pioneered by the London Borough of Merton, which requires the use of renewable energy onsite to reduce annual carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in the built environment. Hundreds of local authorities look set to follow Merton’s lead, which will impact all new major development projects throughout the UK.
    I wish several other countries will take the lead as the UK has shown in this new area of saving energy.
    Thank you

  4. sonia wrote:

    Hi Holly thanks for your comment. Yes - it is a good local policy, but i think we still need to do more to encourgage uptake of renewable energy sources. Central government isn’t really doing enough still and this talk of nuclear has kind of sidelined the issue even further. It’s ridiculous that we might be considering a next generation of nuclear power stations which are not only ridiculously expensive, but the question of what to do with really dangerous nuclear waste remains. Ah..

  5. Cyberotter wrote:

    Hello Sonia,

    Funny how this particular problem faces many of the same obsticles as the hunger problem. I have since reloaded my blog, but a while back I wrote an article about eco-terriforming. The premise is basically the same. How do you get (renewable energy / world hunger) profitable. If you can find a way to make a buck, you -unfortunatly- will all of a sudden find yourself with limitless resources to solve the problem. It’s sad, but true. I rather enjoyed the reading. Great work as always.

  6. sonia wrote:

    Thanks - and you’ve got a good point. it would be interesting to see your article.

  7. Glan Blake Thomas wrote:

    I am so pleased to read articles such as these. Keep on pushing.

    I have started a blog www.itstimeweallstartedtocare.blogspot.com
    do take a look and let me have your comments.

    I have been preaching for nearly 20 years on this important subject but deaf ears abound.

    Kindest regards
    Glan

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