Several appeals against refusal for planning permission for renewable energy projects have helped set precedents for other applicants to follow, explained Alan Hardwick of Fisher German LLP, speaking at the Energy Now Expo in Telford.

While planners have a remit to protect green spaces from development there is less need for applicants to demonstrate a case for renewable energy, he suggested, but rather a site’s suitability for it.

Recent approvals include a 21m turbine in the Staffs Moorlands as potential to reduce emissions outweighed “slight” impact on landscape, while solar panels in the confines of a Grade II listed property were granted as more are “becoming part of the street-scene” nationwide.

Some applications fail, he said. A large solar panel application in Epping Forest was denied as being incongruous to the surrounding landscape, he explained.

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