The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy recently published updated guidance on participating in the UK Emissions Trading Scheme (UK ETS), which launched on 1 January 2021. While the UK ETS closely follows the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS), for now at least, it is a standalone scheme. The UK ETS commits to a similar approach to the EU ETS; however, the changes made may give rise to challenges for both new and transitioning participants.
The Office for Zero Emission Vehicles recently published a consultation on the consumer experience at public charge points. This follows increased political support of and interest in the growing UK e-vehicle sector, which follows the government's move to end the sale of new petrol and diesel cars in the United Kingdom by 2030. The consultation signals the government's ambition to take decisive action and get the UK charging network prepared for the expected uptake in e-vehicles.
The Scottish government recently released its Hydrogen Policy Statement together with the Scottish Hydrogen Assessment. The statement has been long heralded and eagerly awaited by industry. This article discusses key aspects of the statement, including key sectors for deployment, the trade of hydrogen, locations for deployment, the timeline for deployment, funding, key stakeholders and the next steps.
At the end of 2020 the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy published the much-anticipated Energy White Paper, setting out its strategy for the United Kingdom's energy transition over the next decade. The Energy White Paper focuses on strategy in six key areas: consumers, power, the energy system, buildings, industrial energy and oil and gas.
The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy recently published its response to the consultation on the proposed amendments to allocation round four (AR4) contracts for difference (CfD) for low carbon electricity generation. Industry should note the headline amendments to AR4 – in particular, the new 'pots', changes relating to negative pricing, capacity caps and the amended supply chain plans policy.
The Scottish government has launched a public consultation on the introduction of market restrictions on certain single-use plastic items. Responses to the consultation must be submitted before 4 January 2021. The proposed market restrictions on single-use plastics follow and may extend beyond the provisions in Article 5 of the EU Single-Use Plastics Directive 2019/904.
A raft of updated government guidance has been published clarifying the requirements for labelling and packaging food and drink in readiness for the end of the Brexit transition period on 31 December 2020. This should provide some comfort for food business operators and be well received by the food and drink industry, which has long urged the government to consider measures for periods of adjustment. However, despite these government notes, uncertainty remains.
The Supreme Court's judgment in the Financial Conduct Authority's test case on non-damage business interruption cover for losses arising from the COVID-19 pandemic has wide-ranging implications. In terms of the impact on property, this is a significant decision for both landlords and tenants, where premises were forced to shut under the government's instructions to businesses to close and stay at home and following the introduction of social distancing instructions in March 2020.
The judicial review of the government's changes to the use classes order and new permitted development rights was recently dismissed. The High Court ruled that the changes had been legally enacted, a judgment which Rights: Community: Action is seeking permission to appeal. Although this appeal is unlikely to be successful, until any appeal is resolved, there remains uncertainty around the ability to rely on these new permitted development rights and use classes.
A recent Court of Appeal case is the latest in a series of recent planning law cases to be decided against the developer. The courts seem to be moving towards a simpler but less flexible planning system. This is in contrast to the government's recent changes intended to promote flexibility in the planning system.
Over the past few years, there have been numerous queries arising out of uncertainty and lack of clarity in relation to the timescales for the commencement of development under a planning permission in principle and its associated approval of matters specified in conditions. The simplification that will be introduced by the Planning (Scotland) Act 2019 is therefore likely to be welcomed by many, but there are important points to note about the provisions in the 2019 act.
A recent case concerning a landlord's counterclaim for the cost incurred by it in remediating its property prior to undertaking a major redevelopment project provides a useful reminder to tenants on the extent of their potential liability at the end of the term of their lease and sounds a cautionary note to any party undertaking works under licence. The landlord was entitled to recover the full cost of the remediation work to deal with asbestos contamination caused by the previous tenant and its parent company.