A local campaigner has been successful in getting the European Parliament to consider a petition to have the environment considered in planning decisions.
Jonathan Bishop, of Fothergill Street, Treforest, is now calling on the European Union to investigate whether there have been any breaches of European Union Law with regard to the development of a Tesco store on Broadway in Treforest.
In a letter to the European Parliament Mr Bishop asked for his petition to be considered fully so that culturally significant areas “are protected from the capitalist menaces intent on destroying the environment for purely profit motivated goals”
Jim Bailey of Rhondda Cynon Taf Councils planning department confirmed that there was no environmental impact assessment on the proposed site of the Tesco Express despite the fact that it was being built on a Conservation Area.
Mr Bishop says that even if there have been no breaches of existing European Union Law, he would like the law to be change for future developments, “The natural, physical and cultural environment is important to all our communities, and all planning applications should have to consider the effect of the development on the environment, including the effect it has on material heritage, wildlife and people”
Bleddyn Lake, Co-ordinator for the Pontypridd & District Branch of Friends of the Earth agrees that the environment should be taken into account in planning, “Friends of the Earth is actively campaigning for changes in the planning system in Wales”, he said, “Communities can make a really valuable contribution to shaping developments and ensuring that they work for local people and the environment”. Mr Lake continued, “That role appears to be under threat with increasing pressure to speed up the planning process in response to business demands, like Mr Bishop, we want to see the views of local people and the environmental impact of planning decisions taken into account by planners.”
Friends of the Earth will be holding a meeting to discuss local environmental matters at which Mr Bishop will be present on Monday February 12 at 7.30pm at Clwb y Bont in Pontypridd.