The Coal Authority is a statutory consultee on planning applications for development within the defined coal mining areas. This is in part due to one of our specific responsibilities being to manage the environmental legacy of coal mining.
The Coal Authority has provided all 179 coalfield Local Planning Authorities (LPA) in England, Scotland and Wales with GIS data specifying the areas within which we are to be consulted on planning applications.
How Does The Risk Based Process Work?
We have defined specific Development High Risk Areas (formerly known as Coal Mining Development Referral Areas). These are areas, based upon Coal Authority records, where the potential land instability and other safety risks associated with former coal mining activities are likely to be greatest. They include, for example, areas of known or suspected shallow coal mining, recorded mine entries and areas of former surface mining. This information has been provided to all coalfield Local Planning Authorities.
For all new development proposals within Development High Risk Areas that require planning permission, except certain types of development that are exempt, The Coal Authority will expect a Coal Mining Risk Assessment to be prepared and submitted with the planning application to the Local Planning Authority. The Coal Authority will be consulted by the Local Planning Authority on the planning application.
Development on the Exemptions List will not require submission of a Coal Mining Risk Assessment with a Planning Application. Local Planning Authorities will instead include an Informative Note within the Decision Notice, this can be found by selecting your Local Planning Authority from the drop down list below. However, a risk assessment of coal mining legacy issues may be required for a subsequent Building Control/Building Standards application.
The Development High Risk Areas cover approximately 15% of the defined 'coalfield'. Any planning application in the remaining 85% of the coalfield is known as the Development Low Risk Area and will not require a Coal Mining Risk Assessment and the Local Planning Authority will simply include our Standing Advice on the Decision Notice.