Leading global law firm Baker McKenzie successfully advised the not-for-profit organisation Good Law Project, which carries out public interest litigation, Dale Vince, founder of the Ecotricity Group, and environmental campaigner George Monbiot, in bringing a claim for a judicial review seeking that the government assess and suspend the National Policy Statements for Energy (Energy NPSs).
The six Energy NPSs were designated back in 2011. This suite of statements sets out the government’s policy for the delivery of major energy infrastructure, and a framework for the consideration of applications for development consent. Since their publication in 2011 there have been significant developments in environmental legislation which have not been taken into account in the now outdated Energy NPSs. By way of example, in June 2019 the Climate Change Act 2008 was amended increasing the required target for the UK’s net carbon account for the year 2050. The target is now 100% lower than the 1990 baseline, as opposed to 80% lower.
As a result of bringing legal proceedings for judicial review, the government is now carrying out an immediate assessment of the Energy NPSs.
Joanna Ludlam, partner in the Disputes Resolution practice at Baker McKenzie in London, commented, “This case contributes to our track record for succeeding in complex, high profile judicial review claims, and we can truly say that we have made a material contribution to making climate change progress in the UK. It is the latest example of our experience in public law and judicial review cases, pro bono and public interest litigation, and involvement in sustainability issues and climate change. Previous public law credentials include acting in the QASA judicial review against the Bar Standards Board, and acting for the Scottish government in the two cases brought by Gina Miller concerning Brexit.”
The Baker McKenzie team consisted of Disputes partner Joanna Ludlam, and associates Luke Richardson, Olga Ostrovsky, Lereesa Easterbrook and Rosie Sells.