Last edited 09 Feb 2021

Mineral planning authorities

Mineral resources are natural concentrations of minerals or, in the case of aggregates, bodies of rock that are, or may become, of economic interest due to their inherent properties.

Minerals extraction may only take place if the operator has obtained planning permission and other necessary permits and approvals, such as permits from the Environment Agency, and licenses from Natural England and the Coal Authority.


Mineral planning authorities are unitary authorities that deal with mineral planning issues within their areas. In parts of England where there are two tiers of local government (counties and districts), mineral planning authorities are the county councils. National Parks are also mineral planning authorities.

Ref The HS2 London-West Midlands Environmental Statement, Glossary of terms and list of abbreviations, DETR 2013.

Minerals safeguarding is the process of ensuring that non-minerals development does not prevent the future extraction of mineral resources, of local and national importance. A mineral safeguarding area is an area designated by a minerals planning authority which is safeguarded from unnecessary sterilisation by non-mineral development.

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