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Wind Power: Planning Permission

Volume 485: debated on Tuesday 16 December 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how many applications have been (a) received and (b) granted under (i) section 36 and (ii) section 37 of the Electricity Act 1989 in each of the last 10 years. (242484)

The following table provides the data for section 36 power station casework.

Applications

Consents

2000

9

11

2001

4

7

2002

9

8

2003

6

5

2004

5

4

2005

17

4

2006

10

7

2007

12

12

2008

12

12

In the period December 1997 to November 2000 a constraint was imposed on new gas-fired power stations, hence data have been provided from the year in which the policy was lifted.

The Department’s electronic database on section 37 casework is a recent innovation and the volume of such casework is high. Our records, however, show an increase from 350 applications in 2001 to 530 applications in 2005, and a further increase in 2007 to 742 applications. The numbers have been increasing as the network companies seek to improve the resilience of their system. The applications are predominantly for upgrading, minor diversions or rationalisations/re-routing of existing lower voltage lines rather than for completely new high voltage lines. Experience is that the vast majority of these applications would have been consented, with only a few refused or withdrawn.