Decision details

Phosphate Credit Pricing and Allocation Policy

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: Yes

Is subject to call in?: Yes


Cabinet are asked to consider the proposed pricing arrangements for Phosphate Credits, an interim allocation policy pending a full allocation policy and to note the proposed Phosphate Credit Allocation Policy.



a) To continue with all further necessary preparations to the point of commencing trading of credits but not to proceed with the sale of credits until a further report has been provided to Cabinet updating on Nutrient Certainty of the integrated wetlands

b) To approve the pricing of Phosphate Credits at £14,000 + VAT per kilogram of offset required per year.

c) To allocate and ring fence the Phosphate Credit income into the specific Wetland Revenue Reserve to fund the ongoing wetland maintenance, Phosphate Credit administration and investment in further phosphate reduction initiatives across the County;

d) To approve an interim ’First Come First Served’ policy in validation order allocation of Phosphate Credits for housing development applications received and validated on or prior to 31st October 2021 as outlined in this report;

e) To note the Phosphate Credit Allocation Procedure as set out in this report;

f) To agree that, where a planning application lapses or a developer chooses not to proceed to build, all unused Phosphate Credits will be forfeited and the fee paid for them returned to the developer less an administration fee, as part of the Section 106 agreement Process.

g) To receive a report at a future date to agree a permanent Phosphate Credit allocation policy for applications received on or after 1st November 2021; and

h) To delegate to the Corporate Director of Economy and Environment in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Infrastructure and Transport minor clarifications and amendments to the interim Phosphate Credit allocation policy as may be needed from time to time and to review and update the Phosphate Credit price as required.

i) To review the price of phosphate credits in March 2026 based on actual final build and three years actual operating costs.

Alternative options considered:

Do nothing – not recommended.

a. Without a credit pricing and allocation policy credits cannot be traded. As phosphate levels remain in exceedance of conservation targets within the River Lugg catchment area any planning permissions unable to achieve onsite nutrient neutrality within the River Lugg catchment area and development would be unable proceed in the north of the county.

b. The council would have to return the £1m Getting Building Fund grant to the Marches LEP as it would be unable to meet the LEP output targets and the wetlands project cost would have to be further mitigated by the council.

Reason Key: Expenditure and strategic nature / impact on communities;

Wards Affected: (All Wards);

Contact: Ben Boswell, Head of environment, climate emergency and waste services Email: Tel: 01432 261930.

Publication date: 26/05/2022

Date of decision: 26/05/2022

Effective from: 02/06/2022

Accompanying Documents:

  • Phosphate Credit Pricing and Allocation Policy