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NIC launches call for evidence

Words: Laura Edgar

The National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) has launched a 15-week call for evidence.

The call for evidence poses a number of questions, according to an NIC statement, covering transport, digital communications, energy, water and wastewater, flood risk management and solid waste.

The evidence is expected to provide input into the development of the National Infrastructure Assessment (NIA).

Sir John Armitt, deputy chair of the commission, said: “How can infrastructure best support growth, how should we decide what we repair and what we build, and who should pay for it – these are the sorts of big questions we need to answer. That’s why the commission is asking for your views across these and a range of issues as we launch the next stage of our National Infrastructure Assessment.”

Respondents can email their submission to [email protected] by Friday 10 February 2017.

At the same time, the NIC published its response (pdf) to the consultation on the process and methodology of the NIA, which closed in August. 

The commission said the consultation suggested there was support for considering links between infrastructure and health, and housing and fuel poverty.

Some contributors said the commission should be “tasked with covering housing and social infrastructure in detail”, with the omission of housing cited as a “potentially serious flaw”.

The response also noted a number of key interdependencies between sectors that were identified by contributors as likely to be important in the future. These included an increasing dependence on digital communications infrastructure across all sectors; the effects on the energy sector of increasing electrification of transport and how resources from waste and water sectors can used to generate energy.

Additionally, the commission said it agreed that it is important to take account of local plans that are “relevant to nationally strategic infrastructure in considering” specific projects, and to “work with relevant local bodies in understanding the evidence base”.

The response states that the commission will “ultimately reach its own conclusions and make recommendations as appropriate”.

The call for evidence can be found here.

The NIC’s consultation response can be found here (pdf).

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