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Deregulation (Pipe-Lines) Order 1999

Volume 597: debated on Wednesday 24 February 1999

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10.51 p.m.

rose to move, That the draft order laid before the House on 30th November 1998 be approved [2nd Report from the Delegated Powers and Deregulation Committee].

The noble Lord said: My Lords, the Pipe-lines Act 1962 is, in effect, planning legislation for certain onshore pipe-lines and has been with us for a number of years now.

There is, therefore, a considerable body of expertise and experience in administering the Act and it is that experience which has indicated that some changes to it may now be appropriate. The Deregulation and Contracting Out Act 1994 gives an opportunity to make some changes to the Act. These changes will make it somewhat easier for companies which need authorisation for their proposed pipes from the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry to achieve that authorisation. I can assure the House that all necessary protection has been maintained, as evidenced by the report from the Select Committee on Delegated Powers and Deregulation, which states that the order as submitted is in a form satisfactory to be submitted to this House.

The changes to the Act are, first, repeal of Section 2 so that proposed short pipes need no longer be notified to the Secretary of State. Secondly, repeal of Section 3 so that short diversions of existing pipes no longer need authorisation from the Secretary of State. Thirdly, repeal of Section 7 so that short pipes can be added to existing pipes no longer need authorisation from the Secretary of State. Fourthly, the introduction of a written representations procedure which could be used to deal with objections to an application for authorisation from the Secretary of State. I commend the order to the House.

Moved, That the draft order laid before the House on 30th November 1998 be approved. [ 2nd Report from the Delegated Powers and Deregulation Committee]—( Lord McIntosh of Haringey.)

My Lords, I am grateful to the Minister for his explanation of the order. I am entirely content with it.

On Question, Motion agreed to.