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Policy SI10 Aggregates


  1. An adequate supply of aggregates to support construction in London will be achieved by:
    1. encouraging re-use and recycling of construction, demolition and excavation waste within London
    2. extracting land-won aggregates within London
    3. importing aggregates to London by sustainable transport modes
    4. meeting the target of 95 per cent recycling/re-use of construction, demolition and excavation waste by 2020 and recycling 50 per cent of that waste as aggregates by 2020.
  2. Development Plans should make provision for the maintenance of a landbank (i.e. seven years’ supply) of at least five million tonnes of land-won aggregates up to 2041, in particular through a landbank apportionment of:
    1. at least 1.75 mt to London Borough of Havering
    2. at least 0.7 mt to London Borough of Redbridge
    3. at least 1.75 mt to London Borough of Hillingdon
    4. at least 0.7 mt to London Borough of Hounslow.
  3. All Mineral Planning Authorities in London should identify and safeguard aggregate resources in Development Plans, including aggregate recycling facilities.
  4. To reduce the environmental impact of aggregates, Development Plans should:
    1. ensure that appropriate use is made of planning conditions dealing with aftercare, restoration and re-use of minerals sites following extraction, with particular emphasis on promoting green infrastructure, especially biodiversity
    2. safeguard wharves and/or railheads with existing or potential capacity for aggregate distribution and/or processing to minimise the movement of aggregates by road and maximise the movement of aggregates by sustainable modes.

London needs a reliable supply of construction materials to support continued growth. National planning policy requires Mineral Planning Authorities to maintain a steady and adequate supply of aggregates. These include land-won sand and gravel, crushed rock, marine sand and gravel, and recycled materials. Most aggregates used in the capital come from outside London, including marine sand and gravel and land-won aggregates, principally crushed rock from other regions. There are relatively small resources of workable land-won sand and gravel in London.

A realistic landbank figure (i.e. seven years’ supply) of at least 5 million tonnes of land-won aggregates for London throughout the Plan period has been apportioned to boroughs as set out in the policy above. There remains some potential for extraction beyond the four boroughs identified in Policy SI10 Aggregates, including within the Lee Valley, and boroughs with aggregates resources should consider extraction opportunities.

Aggregates are bulky materials so Development Plans should maximise their use and re-use and minimise their movement, especially by road. The objective of proximity dictates the best and most local use of materials that can be extracted in London. The re-use/recycling of building materials and aggregates is a significant and well established component of the circular economy advocated in Policy SI7 Reducing waste and supporting the circular economy and reduces the demand for natural materials.

Boroughs should protect existing, planned and potential sites for aggregate extraction and transportation. Existing and future wharf capacity is essential, especially for transporting marine-dredged aggregates, and should be protected in accordance with Policy SI15 Water transport. Equally important are railway depots for importing crushed rock from other parts of the UK. Railheads are vital to the sustainable movement of aggregates and boroughs should protect them.

Sites for depots may be particularly appropriate in preferred industrial locations and other employment areas. Boroughs should examine the feasibility of using quarries as CD&E recycling sites once mineral extraction has finished.

Mineral Planning Authorities are required to prepare an annual Local Aggregates Assessment (LAA). It is not reasonable to expect boroughs without mineral resources or aggregate facilities to produce their own LAAs, so the Mayor will continue to prepare a joint London-wide LAA to supplement individual LAAs from boroughs with resources and facilities.