Planning Examination

The Planning Inspectorate (PINS) Examination

The Examination Process

Large scale offshore wind projects, like East Anglia One North Offshore Windfarm and East Anglia Two Offshore Windfarm are termed ‘Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects’ (NSIPs).  The official process for any NSIP includes a 6 month Examination by the Planning Inspectorate (PINS).  During this stage Interested Parties who have registered by making a Relevant Representation are invited to provide more details of their views in writing or at hearings.  Within three months of the close of the Examination, the Planning Inspectorate (PINS) must prepare a report on the Application to the Secretary of State including a recommendation. The Secretary of State then has a further three months to make the decision on whether to grant or refuse development consent.  Once a decision has been issued by the relevant Secretary of State, there is a six week period in which the decision may be challenged in the High Court. This process of legal challenge is known as Judicial Review.

Where we’re at now

On 1 April 2021, 5 days before the 6 month Examination period was due to close, the Planning Inspectorate announced that the Secretary of State had granted a three-month extension to the Examinations of ScottishPower Renewables EA1N & EA2 Applications. This means the Examinations might not close until 6th July 2021.

This has come as a shock and very late in the day to many people who thought the end of the examinations was in sight.

SEAS has joined forces with SASES, Save Our Sandlings, The Aldeburgh Business Association and Friston Parochial Church Council to officially object to the extension of the Examinations on the grounds that it is procedurally unfair.

SEAS, like other local groups, have limited human and financial resources. To meet the gruelling schedule of hearings we, in effect, emptied the bank accounts to pay for experts and counsel and cancelled or deferred commitments. We will be severely hampered in our ability to participate further in this inquiry. Some groups and individuals may not be able to participate at all. In this context, ScottishPower Renewables (SPR) has unlimited resources and any extension can and will be funded commensurately. Added to this the Sizewell inquiry has now commenced and many of those involved in this Examination will now be involved in the Sizewell examination. Thus further increasing the strain on resources. Finally, the overwhelming impression we are left with is that the extension benefits SPR by giving them an unfair chance to plug the multitude of gaps that exist in its evidence. SPR has had more than ample opportunity to adduce evidence on all matters. If that evidence is inadequate, which we say it is, then the Examiners are bound to conclude that SPR’s applications simply fail.

 

Relevant documents

  1. The Letter from the Secretary of State extending the Examination to 6 July 2021.
  2. Notification of a new deadline for completion of Examinations.
  3. SEAS formal objection to the Examination extension.
  4. SEAS Deadline 10 Submission
NEW EXAMINATION TIMETABLE

On 1 April 2021, 5 days before the 6 month Examination period was due to close, the Planning Inspectorate announced that the Secretary of State had granted a three-month extension to the Examinations of ScottishPower Renewables EA1N & EA2 Applications. This means the Examinations will not close until 6th July 2021.

June 7 2021  Deadline 11

June 16 2021  Publication by ExA of:
• Amendments to the previously issued Reports on the Implications for European Sites

June 28 2021  Deadline 12

July 5 2021  Deadline 13

July 6 2021  Close of Examinations

Key Documents from the Examination

Examination Timetable

‍‍Recent Documents published by the Examining Authority

Examination Library
The Examination Library includes a full list of ScottishPower Renewables Application Documents; Relevant Representations; Procedural Decisions; Additional Submissions; Agendas, Transcripts and Audio Recordings of all Hearings, Site Inspections and all Written Representations

Open Floor Hearings

Listen to the voices that have spoken so passionately at the Hearings

Open Floor Hearings 7 – 28 January 2021Speakers
Action Points
Session 1 Audio & Transcript
Session 2 – Audio & Transcript

Open Floor Hearings 6 – 22 January 2021Speakers
Action Points
Session 1 – Audio & Transcript
Session 2 – Audio & Transcript

Open Floor Hearings 5 – 6 November 2020Speakers
Session 1 – Audio & Transcript
Session 2 – Audio & Transcript

Gary Waple – Snape Resident
Fiona Gilmore – Snape Resident
Gillian Horrocks – Aldringham Resident
Paul Chandler -Sizewell Resident
David Wybar Aldeburgh Golf Club – Aldringham Resident

Open Floor Hearings 4 – 5 November 2020Speakers
Session 1 – Audio & Transcript
Session 2 – Audio & Transcript

Edward King – Snape Resident
Jenny Kennedy – Friston Resident
Marie Szpak – Friston Resident
Susan Osben – Aldeburgh Librarian
Sheridan Steen – Friston Resident
Melissa Baker – local resident
Brigette D’Angelo – Rendham Resident

Open Floor Hearings 3 – 9 October 2020Speakers
Session 1 – Audio
Session 2 – Audio

Jill Hubbard
Georgina King – SEAS
Christine Laschet – Aldringham Resident
Mya Manakides – Friston Resident
Henrietta Palmer – Sizewell Resident
Glynis Robertson – SEAS
Chris Wheeler

Open Floor Hearings 2 – 8 October 2020Speakers
Session 1 – Audio
Session 2 – Audio

Rt Hon Dr Therese Coffey MP
Fiona – Friston Resident
Natasha – Friston Resident

Open Floor Hearings 1 – 7 October 2020Speakers
Session 1 – Audio
Session 2 – Audio

Bridget Chadwick – Sandlings Resident
Peter Chadwick – Sandlings Resident
Iain Brown – Aldeburgh Resident
Luigi Beltrandi – Friston Resident
Fiona Gilmore – SEAS
Peter Chadwick – Save Our Sandlings

The Way Forward - A Split Decision

SEAS has called on the Examining Authorities to recommend to the Secretary of State a 'split decision' so that:

  1. The offshore turbines are recommended for consent.
  2. The onshore infrastructure is rejected in favour of full consideration of better locations for this infrastructure where the adverse impacts are minimised at a brownfield or industrialised site.

SEAS Submission to the Planning Inspectorate Re: The 'Split Decision'  February 2021

Therese Coffey MP campaigns for a 'Split Decision' and to reject the Friston Substation February 2021

Wasteful windpower firms will feel the force, Janice Turner, The Times, 29 October 2020

Biodiversity

SEAS Biodiversity Submissions to the Examination

 
 

Key Documents

The Dasgupta Report, Final Report of the Independent Review on the Economics of Biodiversity led by Professor Sir Partha Dasgupta, 2 February 2021
‘Powering Our Net Zero Future: Energy White Paper’, Energy White Paper, HM Government, Dec 2020
The 10 Point Plan for a Green Industrial Revolution, HM Government, November 2020

In the Press

Can Offshore Wind Development Avoid Harming Nature? Greentechmedia, 11 January 2021
Big UK offshore windfarms push risks harming habitats, say campaigners, The Guardian, 14 November 2020
18 Environmental Groups write to the PM, Wildlife and Countryside Link, 13 November 2020

Non Disclosure Agreements

This complaint, made on behalf of Suffolk Energy Action Solutions, concerns efforts being made by Scottish Power Renewables (SPR) to prevent persons who would otherwise have a reason to object and provide support to groups opposing SPR’s application in respect of EA1N and EA2, from opposing the application for consent. The nub of the complaint concerns the fact that in the course of concluding agreements with landowners, SPR is including a clause which makes agreement conditional upon the individual landowner concerned not opposing the application and withdrawing any evidence already given.

 

Therese Coffey MP writes to the Secretary of State with regard to Non Disclosure Agreements February 2021

Campaign With Us

We are asking you to write, to the Secretary of State for the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), The Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng MP, calling for him to recommend a 'split decision' so that:

  1. The offshore turbines are recommended for consent.
  2. The onshore infrastructure is rejected in favour of full consideration of better locations for this infrastructure where the adverse impacts are minimised at a brownfield or industrialised site.

Email: secretary.state@beis.gov.uk

cc: beiscorrespondence@beis.gov.uk
therese.coffey.mp@parliament.uk
psrobertjenrick@communities.gov.uk
robert.jenrick@communities.gov.uk
offshore.coordination@beis.gov.uk
offshore.coordination@ofgem.gov.uk
minister.state@beis.gov.uk

bcc: info@suffolkenergyactionsolutions.co.uk

or

Send a Letter:‍ 1 Victoria St., London SW1H 0ET‍

A substation site, 3 times the size of Wembley Stadium in the midst of Friston, a medieval rural village

Yes to Offshore Wind Energy, Let's Do it Right

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