It is important in these challenging times that we continue to provide Members with the opportunity to engage in meaningful dialogue on policy issues that matter, both now and as we emerge from the current restrictions placed on us all by COVID-19.

It is equally important that NIPA continues to support Government / the Planning Inspectorate in enabling the NSIPs Regime to continue to operate in a fair, transparent and inclusive way, whilst delivering the certainty to investors that is so essential if the national infrastructure sector is to play its part in supporting the revitalisation of the economy post COVID-19 restrictions.

We are therefore introducing a 6-month programme of virtual meetings for NIPA Members - “NIPA Matters”, where we will:

  • feed back on NIPA initiatives to which you have contributed, including how they have been received within Government / the Planning Inspectorate;
  • cover a range of topics on which we would value your input; and
  • provide direct opportunities for dialogue with Government and the Inspectorate.

We will be inviting Government and Planning Inspectorate colleagues to join us on the calls. Additionally, after each call there will be a further opportunity to input your views to any Board Member on the call, and a summary of key views / ideas / outputs will then be circulated.

1) NIPA Survey Report - The Role of the Infrastructure in Kick-Starting the Economy - The first event will be introduced by Board Member Tom Carpen, and chaired by Robbie Owen. Tom will present the key points from responses to the NIPA Survey, captured in a Draft NIPA report circulated in advance, and then enable you to provide further input to the Report before it is finalised. In particular, we are keen to receive specific examples and evidence to support our recommendations, either on the call or in writing afterwards.

This call will take place at 4pm on Monday 29th June, and if you want to register please email Michaela, NIPA Member Services at info@nipa-uk.org by cop Thursday 25th June, following which your dial in details will be circulated.

2) NIPA COVID-19 Paper and Government / Inspectorate Update - the second event will be led by NIPA Board Chair Angus Walker and will cover how the NIPA COVID-19 paper has been received by Government and the Planning Inspectorate and provide an update on what elements they are looking to take forward; and in the meantime how applicants can best navigate through the current restrictions.

This event will take place at 4pm on Monday 27th July - please put it in your diary and a message will follow in mid-July for you to register.

3) Digital Environmental Impact Assessment - Our third session will draw on the first two events and focus on how digitalisation can work when undertaking environmental impact assessment - and how we can collectively embrace the opportunities and tackle the challenges.

This session at 4pm on Monday 7th September will be introduced by Board Member Matt Sharpe, so hold the date and look out for the invite to register which will come out in mid August.

4) Infrastructure Planning Reforms - Our fourth event will be led by NIPA Board Secretary Robbie Owen, and will consider the planning reforms being suggested to and contemplated by Government.

This session will be held at 4pm on Monday 21st September, so please hold the date in your diary.

A further three sessions will take place on the first Monday of each month in October, November and December at 4pm, and we are interested in hearing from Members what else they believe it would be valuable to discuss, so please send any ideas to NIPA Policy Adviser Jane Smith at info@nipa-uk.org.