Significant steps for Seagreen – Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) Promotion
Updated: Sep 2, 2019
Seagreen Alpha Wind Energy Limited (“Seagreen”) has formally promoted a Compulsory Purchase Order (“CPO”) for specific rights in land that are required for the onshore infrastructure forming part of its wider offshore wind farm development in the Firth of Forth. CPO is a legal process used to acquire land, or rights in land, needed to enable a project to proceed, where this might otherwise not be possible through negotiation alone.
The decision to promote a CPO is not one that Seagreen, or any infrastructure provider takes lightly and we are fully aware and sensitive to the concerns affected parties may have. Seagreen encourages affected parties to discuss their concerns regarding the rights being sought with the project team in order to reach a position which is agreeable to all parties and removes the need for the CPO being exercised. To that end, Seagreen’s primary aim remains unchanged; to reach a negotiated agreement on voluntary terms with all parties.
Following the promotion of CPO, affected parties may make a representation to Scottish Ministers (raise an objection) to express concerns or request further information. These representations can then be withdrawn where the party feels satisfied with the information provided and/or where voluntary landowner agreements have been reached.
In some cases where objections have been raised an inquiry could be held before an independent Reporter. A flow-chart taken from Scottish Government Circular 6-2011 is available below which provides a general illustration of the CPO process. For ease of reference, commentary on the Seagreen project is noted down the right-hand side:-
Further detail on Seagreen’s CPO can also be found in the Statement of Reasons document which provides additional detail on the rationale behind the use of these powers. The onshore work of an offshore wind project is often over looked, but it is absolutely critical to ensure the project is able to connect into the national grid to transport the clean, renewable energy generated by the wind farm to homes all across the UK. Seagreen has the potential to power up to 1.2 million homes, which is almost half of all households in Scotland.
Seagreen have presented at a number of Community Council meetings and will continue to engage with the local community and other stakeholders along the route.
The next few months will see more planning activities and the team will continue to engage with all stakeholders. This will include an opportunity for local businesses to find out more about the project and how they can be part of team Seagreen in our Meet the Buyer events, scheduled for the end of the year.