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Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) Scheme

by Nicholas Johnn

The long awaited reforms to the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) Scheme are set to come in to force on 22nd May 2018. Following the consultation to reform the RHI scheme which was held back in 2016 and ...

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Environment Matters - 2018 Back Issues

by Nicole Orme

Back issues of the Environment Matters Newsletter

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Environmental Permitting Regulations Amendment

by Jon Pettitt

An amendment to the Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) (Amendment) Regulations was published at the beginning of the year to implement the Medium Combustion Plant Directive (MCPD). From 20th December 2018 new combustion plant in the range 1MW ? 50MW will require an Environmental Permit with upper limits on emissions of sulphur dioxide, nitrogen oxides and dust. This will include all boilers, combustion plant used electricity generation and Combined Heat and Power (CHP) units. Measures for existing plant will be implemented on a phased basis depending on the capacity of the plant, with implementation dates in 2024 and 2029. Additional permit requirements are proposed for ?Specified Generators? used for electricity generation, and are not connected to the electricity transmission and distribution network. Draft guidance on the implementation of the MCPD is due to be published by the EA in May.

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The Future of Agricultural Policy

by Kirsty Lodge

The Government's recent consultation on the future of agricultural policy in England outlines the intended reform of Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) following our departure from the EU. So what does this tell us?

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DNOs to Start Charging for Grid Connection Applications

by Nick Leaney

The Secretary of State for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) confirmed this week the latest energy statutory instrument which will allow Distribution Network Operators (DNOs) to start charging for processing electricity grid connection offers.

The Electricity (Connection Offer Expenses) Regulations 2018, which come into force on 6 April 2018 require the applicant to pay the reasonable expenses relating to a grid connection application that have been reasonably incurred by the electricity distributor, the DNO.  To date this instrument has not been available to DNOs with the result being that developers, speculators and promotors of energy infrastructure development have effectively locked up grid capacity for up to 12mths whilst the offer is kept open, often stopping other more viable schemes coming forward.  In 2016/17 Western Power Distribution had almost 8GW of generators waiting to connect schemes to their network resulting in connection offers not being made or if they were being conditional or time constrained.

Under the new regulation, DNOs will be able to recover reasonable costs incurred in assessing impacts on the distribution and transmission systems, designing the connection and processing the application itself.  DNOs will however be required to justify the charge, provide notice to the applicant of the charge and specify when and how payment must be made.

The question is will this pricing mechanism result in market forces unlocking latent grid capacity for new energy development to come forward.

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