Software allows local authorities to assess and reduce the carbon impact of new developments

Thameswey-owned environmental consultant the Energy Centre for Sustainable Communities (ECSC) has launched C-Plan (Carbon Planner), a web-based software service which allows local planning authorities and developers to measure, monitor and report on the carbon impact of new developments.

The software has been designed in response to demand from local authority planners for a tool to meet these challenges.

It provides developers with online templates to submit appropriate evidence of compliance with sustainable energy policy and uses a traffic light system to indicate when a development starts to meet planning policy targets.

The software allows development control officers to use simple graphical indicators to support their decision-making and provides policy officers with rich reporting tools to monitor the impact of policy across all developments on a regional or authority-wide basis.

ECSC brought together local authority planners during the development of C-Plan to work alongside its own in-house team to ensure the product meets their requirements.

The database was built on a platform of sound academic building services research in collaboration with the Department of Engineering Systems at London South Bank University.

David Pitcher, commercial manager at ECSC, said: “C-Plan is the first solution which links up planners, developers, consultants, administrators and policy officers in a single collaborative environment.

“Local authorities and developers will quickly discover that, as well as being extremely user-friendly, C-Plan is built on robust and academically-sourced data. Our long-term vision is that C-Plan will ultimately speed up the planning process and improve efficiency in delivering low and zero carbon development.”

C-Plan has been tested by Woking Borough Council, and has just gone live in Three Rivers District Council.