Why has Broad Energy Wales consulting on its plans now, during the Covid 19 crisis?
This project has been ongoing for many years, however, the project was due to go to consultation in June 2020. It was delayed in the hope that issues with COVID-19 would have passed by September. However, that does no appear to be the case, with cases increasing.
There have been a number of studies which have been undertaken which are only valid for a period of 2 years therefore we have decided to press on.
We are currently in the pre-application phase of the Development of National Significance application. The Developments of National Significance (Procedure)(Wales) Order 216 (and amendments) lists what must be published - https://www.legislation.gov.uk/wsi/2016/55/article/8.
If you click on this link you will note that at article 8a states that notice must be given in the form of a site notice, in writing to owners and occupiers of adjacent land and publishment of the notice in a newspaper. In article 8b, information is only required to be published on a website.
Broad Energy Wales has gone beyond their statutory obligations by distributing booklets to over 3,500 addresses in the locality – much of Welshpool was covered. There are many other such developments which are proceeding at this time, and there is no obligation to pause planning applications in line with the DNS (PINS Wales) guidance. Broad Energy has sought to engage widely with the community, and has developed a number of channels for those who wish to engage with the proposals.