David Payne – UK Minerals Strategy

Minerals are essential to the UK economy – with mineral extraction, products manufacture and first-use markets estimated to be worth up to £235bn per annum, with 16% of the total UK economy directly attributable to minerals.  Minerals are critical to the development and maintenance of the built environment, infrastructure and quality of life.  However, until recently there was no over-arching UK policy for minerals, and a clear dis-connect and lack of understanding on the link between minerals supply and economic, social and environmental wellbeing at all levels of government.

Following several years of information collation and deliberation, the UK Minerals Strategy [1] was produced in 2018 under the aegis of the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) Minerals Group, which represents around 95% of the minerals sector in the UK.

The Strategy is sets out a number of actions that the industry will and which government and others need to undertake to ensure that sufficient minerals are supplied for this and the next generation over the coming 25 years.  In total this is estimated at being around 5 billion tonnes, dominated by construction materials (aggregates and associated products) and industrial minerals, which will mainly be sourced from within the UK.

The Strategy is structured around the main pillars of sustainable development, with key themes in each addressing national policy, investment by industry, regulation and land-use, environmental protection and enhancement, and improving skills, understanding and innovation within the sector.

I will briefly describe the importance of the UK minerals sector and then review progress against a number of the actions in the Strategy.  This will highlight some early successes in influencing government policy.  It will also identify areas where trends are in the wrong direction and the need to better understand the reasons for these and measures that need to be taken by the industry, government and others to turn these round.

[1] UK Minerals Strategy (2018) https://mineralproducts.org/documents/UK_Minerals_Strategy.pdf

Figure 1.  UK Minerals Strategy statement
Figure 2. UK Minerals Strategy ‘pillars’ and actions


David is Senior Planning Advisor to the Mineral Products Association and Secretary to the CBI Minerals Group.  He works in land-use planning policy at national and local levels, ensuring that adequate provision is made for extraction of minerals.  He also leads on biodiversity policy for the MPA.

He also works as a consultant for Cissbury Consulting and BPP Consulting for a range of clients, mainly on waste and minerals planning (applications, policy, research).  He has previously worked on regional planning for the South East England Regional Assembly, the Environment Agency, and started his career at the RSPB.

David has a degree in Biology (ecology) and Masters in Urban and Regional Planning (chartered town planner – MRTPI).  His interests include football, mountain biking and natural history.  He lives with his family in Hove on the south coast of England.

MPA, Gillingham House, 38-44 Gillingham Street, London, SW1V 1HU

Donate now

Any questions: hello@responsiblerawmaterials.com