The firms that took on the EA and won

How did the handful of businesses that have overturned Environment Agency permitting decisions manage to succeed at appeal?

The Environment Agency (EA), it would appear, is close to being an infallible organisation. Or that is one way to read the results of an investigation by ENDS into appeals made against its decisions on environmental permits.

Appeals against EA decisions have to be made via the Planning Inspectorate (PINS), whose latest annual report reveals that both the numbers of appeals received and decided have fallen significantly in the past three years (see infographic). In 2015/16, PINS received 94 appeals against EA environmental permitting decisions and decided 32. By 2017/18, the figures were just 24 and four respectively.

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