A Development Consent Order has been granted in respect of the Riverside Energy Park project, in Bexley, South East London. Following submission of the application in 2018 by Cory Environmental Holdings Ltd, the Examination into the project was held between April and October 2019. The Examining Authority reported in January 2020, and despite the current procedural difficulties the Secretary of State was able to issue the DCO on 9 April.
The applicant is part of the wider Cory Group, and sought development consent in respect of the ‘REP’ to increase energy generation and waste treatment capacity in Greater London. REP is an integrated energy park (comprising waste energy recovery, waste anaerobic digestion, battery storage and solar generation) and will be built next to the applicant’s existing facility, the Riverside Resource Recovery Facility.
Objections to the proposed development were raised on several grounds, including concerns relating to air quality and carbon emissions. In addition, the Examination involved detailed analysis regarding the need for the facility having regard to the waste hierarchy, in which respect the Decision Letter stated that:
“…the Secretary of State is satisfied that making the Order would be consistent with EN-1 and EN-3. Taken together, these National Policy Statements set out a national need for development of new nationally significant electricity generating infrastructure of the type proposed by the Applicant”.
Alexander Booth QC was instructed by Pinsent Masons, on behalf of the successful applicant. Andrew Tait QC and Michael Fry appeared for the Greater London Authority and Transport for London. Melissa Murphy appeared on behalf of Western Riverside Waste Authority instructed by Shakespeare Martineau (the waste authority reached agreement with Cory and had withdrawn its objection by the time of the decision) and Caroline Daly, instructed by BDB Pitmans, represented the London Borough of Bexley.