Before construction and operation can begin, we need to apply for, and secure, any necessary consents. The carbon dioxide and hydrogen pipelines are of a scale that means they are classified as Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects (NSIPs) under the Planning Act 2008.
This means we need to apply to the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) for a Development Consent Order (DCO). This is done via an application and examination managed by the Planning Inspectorate, the government agency responsible for administering applications for NSIPs on behalf of the Secretary of State.
A DCO grants planning consent for the construction and operation of an NSIP. It can also include a number of other consents that would otherwise have to be applied for separately, for example certain highway consents and also grant powers for the compulsory acquisition of land that is associated with the project.
We will make a DCO application for the carbon dioxide pipeline first, with further DCO applications for the hydrogen network following later.
You can find out more about the DCO process on the Planning Inspectorate’s website by clicking here https://infrastructure.planninginspectorate.gov.uk/application-process/the-process/
We will also submit applications for planning permission under the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 (TCPA) for elements of HyNet North West which are not classed as NSIPs, for example the hydrogen production plants.