Latest Objections to West Cumbria Mines application

SLACC’s objection to the current application by West Cumbria mining

Our case rests on lack of compliance with Cumbria’s own development policy; lack of a need for coking coal over a 50 year period; non -compliance with paragraphs 148 and 211 of the NPPF and serious flaws in the argument  on substitution of Greenhouse Gas Emissions.

In short, the amended planning application does not comply with the development plan, in particular policy DC13, because the proposal will have unacceptable environmental impacts (in particular greenhouse gas impacts and the loss of ancient woodland) and enviro-social impacts (in particular, climate change, the resultant negative impacts on people and communities from that change, and embedding a “stranded asset” in the community). It cannot be made acceptable by planning condition or obligation. It should be noted that WCM accepts that it does not comply with this “First Stage” of policy DC13, although it underestimates the extent of the negative impact.

Turning to the Second Stage of the assessment in policy DC13, the proposal does not provide national, local or community benefits which clearly outweigh the likely impacts of granting planning permission, in particular because there is no need for coking coal to be mined for a period of 50 years. Therefore, planning permission should be refused, unless material considerations indicate otherwise. They do not. The proposal does not comply with paragraphs 148 and 211 of the NPPF, which are key material considerations.

Slacctt is objecting to the amended planning application by WCM on a range of strong grounds. We have submitted evidence from a number of sources including:

  • Professor Paul Ekins OBE  (UCL).  See Appendix 1
  • The Materials Processing Institute (The UK centre for innovation in the steel Industry). See Appendix 2
  • A statement by 11 academics with expertise in the area of energy, commodities, steel industry and sustainability. See Appendix 3
  • A written statement by Andrea Leadsom Secretary of State for Business Energy and industrial Strategy September 2019. See Appendix 4