RPS has performed a number of roles on the Hinkley Point C project, including reviewing the original Scoping Report and Stage 1 draft Environmental Statements for both the main site and associated development sites in 2010. At a later stage, we also critically reviewed key chapters of the ES and recommended improvements. Throughout the project we led the HIA and Sustainability Appraisal and prepared the corresponding statements for submission to the former IPC.
The Hinkley Point C (HPC) HIA set the benchmark for new nuclear HIA. The process and methodology applied was innovative, the evidence base comprehensive and the level of integration within the planning, environment and engagement teams was unprecedented. In addition, the assessment protocols applied were additionally validated by a number of regulatory bodies and internationally recognised experts.
Hinkley Point C
Being the first Health Impact Assessment (HIA) of a new nuclear power station presented a number of challenges. In particular communicating how and where all environmental risks were inherently assessed and addressed through the regulatory assessment process, and developing additional assessment protocols to more effectively set such risk into a context within a public facing document.
Image: courtesy of EDF Energy
The final HIA drew from and built upon the supporting technical disciplines to reinforce not only compliance with environmental objectives set to be protective of health, but to respond to and address potential and perceived community health concerns through comparative risk assessment. The approach developed now forms not only new nuclear HIA best practice, but is a proven template for all Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects in the UK.
The HIA was so effective in investigating and addressing potential and perceived risks, the remaining key health concern in the Local Impact Report and Written Representations was on potential health care impacts from non-home-based staff and families moving into the area.
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