Gary Waple, Snape Resident, Open Floor Hearing 5 (OFH5) , Friday 6 November 2020

Good morning, my name is Gary Waple and I live in Snape; our house is on the A1094 road,  which will turn into a gridlocked car park because of increased commercial traffic over a period  of a minimum of 12 years, should the Applicant’s proposals for building substations at Friston  proceed.

For the record, I utterly reject the Applicant’s proposed plans for the landing of  renewable offshore wind energy onshore at Friston via Thorpeness beach, resulting in the  unnecessary destruction of virgin coastal countryside.  

I also support the UK government’s objectives of reducing the UK’s carbon footprint through green energy initiatives. And I support plans for wind farm energy generation. But we also need to ensure that we deliver green energy cleanly.

I also commend previous oral submissions that have expressed disappointment at the holding  of the oral submission hearings virtually instead of waiting until live meetings could have been  held in due course, especially given the BEIS Review that might overtake this process anyway.  

As I have already submitted my written submission within deadline 1, I shall not do more now  than provide a short summary of the points I have submitted:

1. The Applicant’s proposals to damage irreparably an area of unspoilt countryside,  including an AONB, is completely unacceptable. This proposed damage denigrates the  green credentials of the offshore wind farm energy generation and taints the whole  project as ‘dirty’ energy, as whenever end-to-end processes are not significantly green

from start to finish of a process, the green credentials of the whole project must fail.

2. My dismissal of the Applicant’s proposals are supported by, and influenced by, our local MP’s oral submission, that of Dr Thérèse Coffey, also the Secretary of State for Work  and Pensions, who has concluded (and I quote): ‘the impact of this proposal on the countryside, vital habitats, heritage assets, the amenities of local residents and tourism  means I that I formally object to these DCO applications and I urge the Planning  Inspectorate not to recommend them to the Secretary of State’.

3. The likely rippling effects from the time substations are proposed until final completion  and then onwards during their operational lifetime will bring about adverse ecological,  economic and health impacts for untold numbers of years to come, which could have  easily been avoided if the Applicant had heeded Dr Coffey’s advice (and I quote):

‘Throughout the consultation stages, I have suggested alternatives to Scottish Power  Renewables, including the proposed nuclear brownfield site at Bradwell, which would  have meant less onshore cabling and substations in a more appropriate location. SPR  have chosen not to pursue that, which in my view would have made their applications  acceptable and are instead proposing a 32-metre wide cabling corridor across 9km of  sensitive landscape with large substations on the edge of Friston village, without  adequate landscaping’.

4. Added to this, not a single oral submission at any of the hearings to date has expressed  a single phrase of support for the Applicant’s proposals. Perhaps, hardly surprising but  nevertheless a condemnation of the ‘stupid vandalism’ that these proposals will cause  if this outdated point-to-point system is used.  

The Applicant’s proposals must fail any common-sense test of what is allowable, when all  are convinced of a perfectly acceptable alternative brownfield solution that would not  spoil an area of outstanding and fragile beauty in the British countryside irreparably.  That this has been endorsed by the area’s MP, who is also a senior UK Government Minister of State, gives me hope that common sense will prevail in the end, even if in short  supply thus far.


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