Thin gruel from HS2 Select Committee

The HS2 Hybrid Bill Select Committee have published their final report. You can review a copy by clicking here.

The Report provides little comfort to anyone hoping the Committee would push for better environmental outcomes in relation to the HS2 project. The Committee recommend no significant changes to the scheme and are happy to accept every assurance at face value made by HS2 Ltd.

The points made by HS2AA in relation to environmental mitigation barely feature in the report. In particular our requests for a proper approach on air quality is largely ignored as is the proposals to ensure the two million trees which are promised by HS2 Ltd are actually planted. Similarly, requests made by other environmental organisations and local authorities to improve route wide effects are all rejected.

There is slightly better news on compensation, where proposals are made to improve the Need to Sell Scheme-but the wording in the report will give HS2 Ltd and the Department for Transport plenty of wiggle room.

Overall it doesn’t look like this Committee wanted to do anything other than go along with what the Government wanted.

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