A legal challenge to the UK government’s approval of a new gas-fired power plant has failed in the court of appeal. The challenge was brought after ministers overruled climate change objections from the planning authority. The plant is being developed by Drax in North Yorkshire and would be the biggest gas power station in Europe. It could account for 75% of the UK’s power sector emissions when fully operational, according to lawyers for ClientEarth, which brought the judicial review. In 2019 the Planning Inspectorate recommended that ministers refuse permission for the 3.6GW gas plant on the grounds that it “would undermine the government’s commitment, as set out in the Climate Change Act 2008, to cut greenhouse emissions [by having] significant adverse effects.” Andrea Leadsom, the secretary of state for business, energy and industrial strategy at the time of the planning application, rejected the advice and gave the project the go-ahead in October 2019. The high court rejected ClientEarth’s initial legal challenge last May.
Guardian 21st Jan 2021 read more »