Climate change will be a prime consideration in national policy statements (NPSs), communities minister Baroness Andrews insisted this week. Her remarks during a Lords debate on the Planning Bill were prompted by Tory peer Lord Dixon-Smith, who raised fears over compliance with European environmental impact procedures and the habitats directive.

"This is not the bill that we would have introduced in the government's position," he claimed. "We would have worked at the idea of consultation at the pre-planning application stage and developed ideas stemming from that change to evolve the format of inquiries."

But Andrews replied: "The planning white paper included a policy commitment to consider climate change when statements are being developed. We have delivered this by requiring an appraisal of sustainability for every NPS." Andrews also revealed that the government will shortly publish a document setting out in greater detail how the community infrastructure levy (CIL) will operate. This followed concerns expressed in the Lords that the proposals were not fully debated in the Commons. Lord Goodhart cited the RICS's warning that the broad range of CIL powers means that the Lords may not know the full implications of what they vote for.

Andrews said the levy document will help the Lords in their consideration of these clauses when they are discussed at the committee stage in October.