The Yorkshire Post by Mason Boycott-Owen
Yesterday ministers revealed plans to speed up the planning process for Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects after the time taken to get development consent almost doubled in the past 10 years.
Renewable energy generators have previously criticised the process, saying that it is increasingly difficult for the UK to reach its target to decarbonise the power grid by 2035.
“At the time of a cost of living crisis that has seen energy bills skyrocket, government should be doing all it can to deliver domestic energy security, through clean energy projects, so we can bring down energy bills and no longer be reliant on expensive foreign gas.
“It currently takes up to 13 years for an offshore wind farm to go from being an idea to generating power, despite construction of the turbines only taking two to three years. While the reforms announced today may shave a few years off this, eleven years would still be far too long for an offshore wind farm to be up and running.”
Writing online for The Yorkshire Post, Lee Rowley, said: “Whether it’s faster roads, better public transport or world-beating R&D, every infrastructure project that gets the green light in the North is a win-win for the people, businesses and communities who make it what it is.
“That’s one of the reasons why we have published a new cross-government action plan to accelerate the approval of nationally significant infrastructure projects here in the North and across the country.
“With the right infrastructure in place, we will create more of the high-skilled, high-wage jobs our economy needs so that communities throughout the Northern Powerhouse can realise their true potential.”