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Bristol City Council Sustainability Policies

The below policies will need to covered when writing a Sustainability Statement. The below recommendations are copied from a Bristol City Council Planning Response. They relate to a large residential development but for the most part the below measures are applied to all scale of development in Bristol. Even converting a terrace house in to 2 flats will require some sustainability reporting.

Relevant Polices

Core strategy policies relating to sustainability include BCS13-16. In addition, BCSIO (Transport and  Access) also has relevance to sustainability.  The relevant Site allocations and development management policies supporting the core strategy  policies in relation to sustainability are: DM15, DM17, DM19, DM29.

The comments below relate to key considerations at this stage of the development. Full technical  guidance on how to implement the above policies can be found within Bristol City Council's Climate  Change and Sustainability Practice note.

BCS 13 Climate Change

All new development should be designed with the future climate in mind through climate change mitigation &  adaptation techniques. Mitigation and adaptation measures must be integrated into the design.


Energy use — see comments under BCS14 below
Electric Vehicles — The proposed EV charging spaces are supported in line with policy
Cycle parking — The proposed cycle parking is supported in line with policy


 Insufficient information has been provided on climate change adaptation measures.  The proposal conserve water through water efficiency measures and limit water use to 1051/p/d is noted and  supported. However further information should be provided to demonstrate how the development will meet  the following points; 

-The layout of the site should be designed to mitigate extreme temperatures brought about by climate  change. Orientation, form, massing and planting for shade should be carefully considered so that both  internal and external spaces are comfortable in hot weather. 

-The building design should mitigate extreme temperatures and risk of overheating brought about by  climate change. This should include good thermal mass, living walls and roofs, open able windows,

-Development should minimise flooding through the use of sustainable drainage systems — please refer to  comments from flood risk manager.

-Development should include blue & green infrastructure to both mitigate the urban heat island and  reduce surface water runoff. DM15 requires that new GI assets are designed to be multifunctional, and  expects the provision of additional and/or improved management of existing trees as part of new  development. Minimal green infrastructure is proposed. Further greening is required for example through  provision of a green/ green-blue roof with a deep substrate and minimal/no sedum blanket areas.

-Development should avoid responses to future climate impacts leading to increases in energy use (e.g. air  conditioning systems).

BCS 14 Sustainable Energy

Calculation methodology

The calculation methodology (SAP12) is in line with policy, however the baseline energy calculation is not  policy compliant. This needs to include a policy compliant heating system, not electric heating as currently  included as this results in high baseline emissions compared to other policy compliant heating systems. The  calculations must be revised and a revised energy statement and table submitted

Energy Efficiency

The energy efficiency measures proposed are acceptable. Read more on Energy Statement Page.

Heating systems — Heat Hierarchy

The heating system proposed (electric heating) does not comply with the BCS14 heat hierarchy. The site is  within the heat priority area and nearby to an emerging heat network in the St Pauls area and is therefore  required to incorporate infrastructure to enable connection to forthcoming networks in the future. i.e a wet  communal heating system.  In accordance with the heat hierarchy, the preference is for this to be served by a renewable heating system  such as air source heat pumps. These could be located at roof level.

BCS 15 Sustainable Construction

Waste & recycling

The proposals set out in the sustainability statement do not set specific targets for construction waste  reduction/diversion from landfill. A Site Waste Management Plan should be conditioned to include these  targets.

The storage for bins and recycling should be provided in line with Bristol Waste's recvcling planning guidance.  — see comments from Bristol Waste on the proposal.
Water  The water efficiency proposals are acceptable. Further consideration of the use of rainwater harvesting is  encouraged.


The proposal for the use of A and A+ -rated BRE Guide materials in 80% of the major building elements as set  out in the sustainability statement is supported.


There do not appear to be proposals to enhance biodiversity or green infrastructure on site. In addition to BS15 requirements about enhancing biodiversity, the Site Allocations and Development  Management Plan also links to biodiversity (DM15 and DM29).  Biodiversity enhancement options could include; sustainable drainage systems such as green roofs, brown  roofs, living walls, tree pits, swales, attenuation ponds to reduce surface run off and improve water quality,  wildlife areas, the inclusion of bird and bat boxes and the planting of fruit/ nut bearing trees. Green roofs  should be specified with deep substrate depths to support a greater variety of species, hold significantly more  rainfall, have a greater thermal mass and have greater evapotranspiration properties.

BCS 16 Flood Risk & Water Management

This policy requires Flood resilience and surface water management. Please see comments from the flood risk team