I've (we've) said it before - and it really does need repeating and elaborating.
The way that The Environment Agency has dealt with the water licence at Avoncliff is absolutely not an isolated case or a "solitary very complex" ( as asserted by DEFRA Minister Richard Benyon) case but is actually an instance of what can be seen to be a deliberate pattern of abusive behaviour which those officials perpetrating the delinquent deeds and some of their supervisors have sought to avoid reasonable public and institutional scrutiny of - by any means to hand.
This post will be expanded with information and documents over the next few days which will detail misconduct by licencing officials in relation to a scheme which failed and a company whose business was destroyed entirely as a result of the delinquent activities of officials in the Environment Agency water licencing and legal departments.
South East Power Enginering (Pershore Project) http://sepengineering.com/
This was the project that started our alarm bells tinkling. The scenario was virtually identical to the situation at Avoncliff - right down to the individual participants at The Environment Agency and the agent acting for the "winning" licence and - of course - the contrived and unlawful outcome arrived at via comprehensive abuse of process. SEPE did the Queen's turbine at Windsor.
The Small Hydro Company (was at www.smallhydro.co.uk)
These unfortunate chaps suffered so much from the irrational, arbitrary conniving antics of Environment Agency officials and lawyers that they were driven out of business (and into some personal insolvency) - essentially through no fault of their own beyond a belief that the system was fair, efficient and honest... They operated in partnership with British Waterways (who have now morphed into CaRT) - one would have thought that they might have received some reasonable treatment from fellow quango - the EA in that capacity but - nope... 25 schemes aborted as we understand it.(a claimed 210,000 MWh per year) and 150 jobs down the toilet and a blizzard of personal woe for some of the participants.
Within weeks of challenging the Environment Agency over the Avoncliff abstraction / impoundment licence (first time around) the Avoncliff team was aware that other projects had suffered unreasonably as a result of the conniving and damaging actions of officials and lawyers working for the Environment Agency.
There's (a lot) more to come over the next few days.
|A still from an EA budget training video|