All development proposals will contribute to the delivery of sustainable development, ensure protection and enhancement of natural and built environmental assets and geodiversity and be located and designed so as to reduce carbon emissions and mitigate and adapt to future climate change. 

Renewable energy proposals will be supported where impacts on amenity, wildlife and landscape are acceptable.

Opportunities to improve river water quality and minimise air, land and water pollution will be taken where possible.

Open spaces and areas of biodiversity interest will be protected from harm, and the restoration, enhancement, expansion and linking of these areas to create green networks will be encouraged through a variety of measures such as:

  • maximising opportunities for creation of new green infrastructure and networks in sites allocated for development;
  • creating green networks to link urban areas to the countryside;
  • the designation of Local Nature Reserves and County Wildlife Sites;
  • appropriate management of valuable areas, such as County Wildlife Sites;
  • minimising the fragmentation of habitats, creation of new habitats and connection of existing areas to create an ecological network as identified in the North Norfolk ecological network report;
  • progress towards Biodiversity Action Plan targets; and
  • conservation and enhancement of Sites of Special Scientific Interest(SSSI) in accordance with the Wildlife and Countryside Act;

New development will incorporate open space and high quality landscaping to provide attractive, beneficial environments for occupants and wildlife and contribute to a network of green spaces. Where there is no conflict with biodiversity interests, the quiet enjoyment and use of the natural environment will be encouraged and all proposals should seek to increase public access to the countryside.

The Built Environment and designated Public Realm areas will be conserved and enhanced through the protection of buildings and structures which contribute to their surroundings, the encouragement of high quality maintenance and repair and enhancement of public spaces. Innovative and locally distinctive design will be encouraged in all new development.

The Council will minimise exposure of people and property to the risks of coastal erosion and flooding and will plan for a sustainable shoreline in the long-term, that balances the natural coastal processes with the environmental, social and economic needs of the area. Sustainable Drainage Systems will be encouraged, to reduce flood risk, promote groundwater recharge and improve water quality, enhance biodiversity and provide amenity benefit.