Sunnica Energy Farm
- Credit: Archant
Sunnica Energy Farm Section 47(6) Planning Act 2008 - Sunnica Energy Farm Notice of Publication of Statement of Community Consultation
Notice is hereby given that Sunnica Limited of 2 Crossways Business Centre, Bicester Road, Kingswood, Aylesbury HP18 ORA (the “Applicant”) proposes to make an application (the “Application”) under section 37 of the Planning Act 2008 to the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy for a Development Consent Order (“DCO”) to authorise the construction, operation (which includes maintenance) and decommissioning of a new solar energy farm and battery storage facility connecting to the Burwell National Grid Substation in Cambridgeshire (the “Sunnica Energy Farm”).
The Sunnica Energy Farm will comprise of ground mounted solar photovoltaic (PV) panel arrays to generate electricity from the sun as direct current and one or more Battery Storage Systems to be located near Chippenham and Snailwell in Cambridgeshire, Isleham in Cambridgeshire and Suffolk, and Worlington and Freckenham in Suffolk. The Sunnica Energy Farm will cover an area of approximately 1,130 hectares (ha) and will be made up of Sunnica East Site A, Sunnica East Site B, Sunnica West Site A and Sunnica West Site B (the “Sites”). The proposed DCO will, amongst other things, authorise:
• construction, operation, maintenance and decommissioning of a ground mounted solar photovoltaic (PV) and storage facility with an export capacity of over 50MW on the Sites;
• associated and/or ancillary works including an extension to the Burwell National Grid Substation in Cambridgeshire, underground electrical cables connecting the Sites to each other and to the Burwell National Grid Substation, landscaping, biodiversity areas, access tracks, construction compounds and offices;
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• the permanent and/or temporary compulsory acquisition (if required) of land and/or rights;
• the overriding of easements and other rights over or affecting land;
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• the application and/or disapplication of legislation relating to the Sunnica Energy Farm; and
• such ancillary, incidental and consequential provisions, licences, property rights, permits and consents as are necessary and/or convenient.
As the Sunnica Energy Farm will generate in excess of 50MW of electrical capacity, it is classed as a Nationally Significant Infrastructure Project under the Planning Act 2008. Accordingly, the Applicant will apply to the Secretary of State for a DCO under the Planning Act 2008.
Before the Application is submitted, the Applicant has a duty to consult the local community under section 47 of the Planning Act 2008 in accordance with its Statement of Community Consultation (“SoCC”). The SoCC explains how the Applicant will be consulting the local community about the proposed Application.
The Applicant has produced a SoCC in respect of the proposed Application and which can be viewed on the project website from 17 September 2020. To view the SoCC, please visit the following page on the website: www.sunnica.co.uk/public-consultation.
Details of how the consultation for the proposed Application will be carried out, including a virtual exhibition, online events, and how to get involved are set out in the SoCC. The consultation will take place between 22 September 2020 and 23.59 hours on 2 December 2020.
The proposed Sunnica Energy Farm is an Environmental Impact Assessment (“EIA”) development for the purposes of the Infrastructure Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations 2017. The Applicant is, therefore, required to carry out an EIA and submit an Environmental Statement with the proposed Application containing information about the likely significant effects of the Sunnica Energy Farm on the environment. Information currently available about the likely significant environmental impacts of the Sunnica Energy Farm will be set out in a Preliminary Environmental Information Report (“PEIR”) that will form part of the consultation documents. As stated in the SoCC, the PEIR will be available to view and comment on the project website from the start of the consultation period on 22 September 2020. To view the PEIR from this date, please visit the following page on the website: www.sunnica.co.uk/downloads.
Requests for a copy of the SoCC can be made to the Applicant from 10 September 2020:
• By post: Sunnica Consultation, FREEPOST reference RTRB-LUUJ-AGBY, c/o Newgate Communications, Sky Light City Tower, 50 Basinghall Street, London, EC2V 5DE
• Telephone: 0808 168 7925
• By email: email@example.com
As part of its consultation with the community, the Applicant will produce a virtual exhibition. This can be accessed at www.sunnica.co.uk/public-consultation. In addition, the Applicant will be holding webinars online. These will include presentations on specific topics and will offer the opportunity to ask questions. Details of each webinar and how to register to take part will be published at www.sunnica.co.uk/public-consultation and publicised on social media and elsewhere online. Should you have any questions about the SoCC or the consultation on the proposed Application please visit the project website or contact the Applicant using the above details or on 08081687925.