High Speed Two: Environment Protection

Department for Transport written question – answered on 22nd October 2021.

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Photo of Sarah Green Sarah Green Liberal Democrat, Chesham and Amersham

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps he has taken to ensure that HS2 Limited is adhering to its Environmental Statement.

Photo of Andrew Stephenson Andrew Stephenson Assistant Whip, Minister of State (Department for Transport)

The Secretary of State for Transport has established a framework to control the environmental impacts of the HS2 project which includes the relevant Act(s), associated Environmental Statement(s) and a suite of documents that together form the project’s Environmental Minimum Requirements (EMRs).

HS2 Ltd is required to comply with the Acts and the EMRs, with the aim of ensuring that the environmental effects reported in the relevant Environmental Statement are not exceeded. The EMRs include documents such as the Code of Construction Practice, which sets out processes and practices to control the works on-site.

Further approvals and controls of designs are given through the planning regime established by the Act. HS2 Ltd and its contractors are also required to comply with commitments given to Parliament, and with Undertakings and Assurances given directly to other affected parties.

The Department for Transport monitors HS2 Ltd’s performance and compliance against all of its objectives, including environmental obligations, via its Development Agreement with the company, and has established supporting governance arrangements and management information streams to ensure that compliance is monitored and maintained.

HS2 Ltd is working towards the publication of its first Environmental Sustainability Performance Report which is planned to be published later this autumn. This will provide a clear and up-to-date account of HS2’s environmental impacts and the important work that is being deployed to mitigate any adverse effects from the scheme.

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