In the biggest shake-up of the planning system for more than 60 years, energy companies and developers are fine-tuning proposals that will test the government's resolve to fast-track schemes considered vital for the national interest.
This week, Gordon Brown maintained that the new regime would "speed up decisions ... for the national infrastructure" in advance of a statement today from energy and climate change secretary Ed Miliband, pushing the case for more wind farms.
While much of the present planning system will remain in place, the new regime will remove decisions on big, strategic infrastructure projects - airport runways, major road schemes and new rail lines, as well as power stations, wind farms, waste disposal schemes and new water projects
Decisions will be taken from local councils and handed to the non-elected IPC.Its head, (ex-chief exec Kent County Council) Pitt replies: "My best estimate is that we will be dealing with a significant number of applications by late spring , and that a substantial amount of groundwork will have been done by both the applicants and other organisations."
See John Vidal's article in the Guardian,WED 15th JULY