The Sizewell C Project

Enquiry received via email

The Sizewell C Project

11 May 2020
Nicola Pilkington

Enquiry

Dear Planning Inspectorate, I am forwarding a letter I wrote to my MP Peter Aldous today about EDFE's Sizewell C DCO. Please hear my concerns about this possibly happening in the next few weeks as I would like to fully participate in the process. However as I express below [Redacted] and believe that my chance to participate will be eroded as I have been told to stay in my house till July 1st. I also have to deal with the added pressure of managing [Redacted] during the Lockdown. I cannot stress strongly enough how important it is to be able to leave my house whilst engaging in the first stages of the DCO process and feel that [Redacted] puts me at a disadvantage in terms the quality of participation I can provide. Besides myself there will also be other people similarly wanting to participate who are Shielded. Please don't forget your obligation to Equalities legislation and assure me that you will reject a DCO submission until people are able to safely leave their homes and fully engage. The fact that we are having to deal with the uncertainties of COVID19 and uncertainties about when EDFE are going to submit their DCO is very challenging to those who are concerned about the impact of SizewellC on local communities and the environment. Sincerely Nicola Pilkington ---------------------------------------------------------------------- Dear Peter, I hope you are keeping well. I am contacting you at this difficult time as I am reading in the Media that EDFE are about to submit their Development Consent Order to the Planning Inspectorate in the next few weeks. If they do submit as they suggest, they will not have taken into account how difficult it will be for the public to properly engage during Covid19. A proportion of the public [Redacted] will have received a Shielding Letter from the NHS. [Redacted]. It stated that I should not leave my house or garden for three months and gave detailed information about how I should manage [Redacted] in the current Pandemic. The suggestions for care are time absorbing and have left me [Redacted] about what I should do if I get ill, how I keep to regular Hospital appointments etc etc. The NHS is being brilliant and I can't complain however it does mean that my focus is somewhat different than usual. Even with a staged lifting of Lockdown for Shielded individuals our Lockdown is likely to continue after July!st. This means that a proportion of the population are not going to be able to engage in the planning process in a manner they feel would be most effective and are going to have to compromise on the quality of their participation. This hardly seems Fair and I would like you to take it up with Ministers charged with Equalities Legislation to establish what is Fair in terms of postponement of the DCO. Any adjusted plans I have seen for going ahead with the DCO depend completely on online usage, including EDFE documents. Being able to visit Libraries as a way of accessing special data as well as EDFE paper copies of Documents is essential. So is the opportunity to meet MP's, Parish and Town Councils and NGO's face to face. Even for those who are not Shielded they should be able to carry out these activities without having to worry whether they need to have these meetings with a face mask on or not? The Industrialisation of East Suffolk through Wind and new Nuclear is challenging to everyone who lives in the area and it is vital that attempts at full engagement should be exemplarily and notably take in account all the environmental protections that apply to the area. I will feel personally most aggrieved if the Government, Planning Inspectorate and EDFE don't show they are listening to the needs of Shielded individuals and make sure there is a postponement of the Development Consent Order of more than a few weeks. Some clarity on this is greatly needed. Best wishes Nicola Pilkington

Advice given

The process for applying for a Development Consent Order (DCO) is set out in the Planning Act 2008. The timing of the application is at the discretion of the Applicant. The project page of the National Infrastructure Planning website will be updated when the application is received and when the decision on whether or not to accept the application for Examination is made. attachment 1 When an Applicant submits an application for development consent to the Planning Inspectorate that there follows a period of up to 28 days for the Planning Inspectorate, on behalf of the Secretary of State, to decide whether or not the application meets the standards required to be accepted for Examination. The standards are set out in Section 55 of the Planning Act 2008 (as amended) and Regulations 5 and 6 of the Infrastructure Planning (Applications: Prescribed Forms and Procedure) Regulations 2009. All parties are encouraged to sign up for Email Updates using the button on the project page or via the link below: attachment 2;email= Email Updates will enable parties to observe what’s happening on the application after it has been submitted to the Planning Inspectorate. Should the application be accepted for Examination, it is important to note that if parties then wish to participate in the Examination they would need to register as an Interested Party at the appropriate time during the Pre-examination stage. If parties have signed up for the Email Updates they will receive a prompt when the registration period opens (the Relevant Representation period). For further information about registering as an Interested Party please see ‘Advice Note 8.2: How to register to participate in an Examination’. attachment 3 The Advice Note explains that if the Planning Inspectorate decides to accept an application for Examination, it will then be the Applicant’s duty to advertise the Relevant Representation period and provide details about how to register to become an Interested Party. The Applicant has indicated that it will extend this registration period beyond the statutory minimum of thirty days, if the application is accepted, to allow all parties more time to review the application documents and register their interest before the start of the six month Examination stage. The PA2008 process is primarily a written process, if you register as an Interested Party then you will have the opportunity to submit written representations throughout the Examination. The Inspectorate will continue to look at ways to engage with people and facilitate progress online. The Planning Inspectorate is mindful of the need to ensure both openness and fairness throughout all stages of the DCO process and will continue to highlight this in discussions with the Applicant. Finally, with regard to the current Coronavirus (COVID-19) situation, please refer to the Planning Inspectorate’s published guidance which will be updated as the situation develops. attachment 4


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