Rules limiting land use change between industries to be scrapped

Proposals to abolish planning rules which require planning permission to be sought for changes in the use of land from one group of industrial processes to another have been issued by the Department of the Environment (DoE).1 They go considerably further than proposals made three years ago which were not pursued following objections that important environmental safeguards would be removed.

The proposals would scrap a feature of planning law which has been virtually unchanged since 1948. This placed many of the more polluting industrial processes in a series of categories or "Special Industrial Use Classes" (SIUCs). Changes in the use of land involving a change of process within one of these use classes have not required planning permission; but permission has been required where it was proposed to replace a process in one use cl

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