ABP seeks Judicial Review to enable Immingham’s future growth

December 5, 2014

ABP has today announced that it is seeking a Judicial Review (JR) of the Secretary of State for Transport’s decision to grant a Development Consent Order (DCO) in respect of the proposed Able Marine Energy Park (AMEP) on the South Bank of the Humber at Killingholme.

The site is immediately adjacent to the Port of Immingham, the nation’s largest port. ABP supports 14,000 local jobs and plays a critical role in the nation’s energy infrastructure.

Regrettably, the DCO allows for the compulsory purchase of the Port of Immingham’s last remaining undeveloped land with access to deep water. ABP wishes to use the site, known as the Triangle site, to develop, in partnership with its customers, a major fuel product import facility, the Immingham Western Deepwater Jetty (IWDJ).

ABP regards the process by which the DCO was granted as being seriously flawed. ABP has been willing to set aside its concerns over the consent process in the interests of reaching a compromise that would allow both the AMEP and our own IWDJ development to proceed.

Able never properly engaged in the process of seeking a compromise preferring instead to adopt an “all or nothing” approach. The failure of the Joint Committee of both Houses of Parliament to consider both sides of the argument dealt another blow to the prospects of a compromise that would have best served the interests of the region.

During the planning process, Able publicly acknowledged that the AMEP development is far bigger than isnecessary to handle the market for offshore wind manufacturing that was hoped for at the time.

Since then, while the UK as a whole has been successful in attracting key elements of the offshore wind supply chain, the anticipated demand for AMEP has failed to materialise.

In the time that Able has failed to engage in a compromise, ABP and its partners have invested and committed to invest nearly £500 million in new facilities at its Humber ports, which will result in over 1000 new jobs for the region. ABP’s own workforce at the port is growing at a rate of 10 per cent per annum providing high quality, well paid, skilled jobs.

However, Immingham cannot maintain this level of growth without the ability to develop additional deep water cargo handling facilities. As well as enabling the IWDJ to proceed, the Triangle site and its waterfront also enable Immingham to re-configure existing facilities to respond to other changes in customer demand and further accommodate future growth.

Given the fundamental importance of the Triangle site to the Port of Immingham, and Able’s unwillingness to engage in a compromise, ABP has concluded that it has no alternative but to seek a Judicial Review of the Secretary of State’s decision to approve the seizure of ABP’s land and associated waterfront. ABP’s decision has been taken after carefully weighing up the interests of the port, our customers and those who rely on the port for their livelihoods, both directly and indirectly.

Able’s case for seizing ABP’s land and associated waterfront has always been weak and has only become weaker with the passage of time. ABP remains willing to work with Able and other stakeholders to find a solution that allows both AMEP and IWDJ to co-exist, avoids damage to the interests of the Port of Immingham and promotes the prospects for the Humber region which ABP is proud to be part of.

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Contact :

Rachel Addison

Communications Manager, Humber

Associated British Ports

Tel: 01482 608414; Mob: 07720 416650

Email: raddison@abports.co.uk