Week commencing 13 June 2016

In today's bulletin

• ECC Committee call for radical overhaul of energy network operation
• Fall in UK properties on the market ahead of EU referendum

• DfT considers M25 double deck carriageway
• North Sea wind farms proposed to boost low carbon energy

Property, Planning and Regeneration

Edinburgh takes first place in regional property investment league table

Research by Morton Fraser has suggested that Edinburgh is the most attractive location for property investment in Britain, outside of London.
Coming in at second and third place respectively were Bristol and Manchester with regional investors finding both cities offer attractive opportunities.

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House price index reports annual rise in property prices

According to the UK House Price Index, average house prices in the country have increased by over eight per cent in the year to April 2016 rising to
£209,000. Statistics showed that the average residential property has increased in value by £16,000 over the last year and by £1,300 since March 2016.

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Fall in UK properties on the market ahead of EU referendum

Despite an increase in residential property supply nationally, the number of houses being put on the market fell in May, according to data from online estate agent HouseSimple. Regionally, London saw a 2.4 per cent drop in supply while towns in the Midlands saw large increases.
HouseSimple chief executive, Alex Gosling, suggested the fall in listed properties could be down to wavering confidence in the market ahead of the EU referendum.

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Former London deputy mayor wins housing endorsement

A former deputy mayor of London who worked for Boris Johnson at City Hall has won backing from a parliamentary committee, enabling his appointment to a top housing role. Sir Edward Lister will be appointed Homes and
Communities Agency chair following the endorsement from the Communities and Local Government committee.

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Great North Plan sets out blueprint for Northern Powerhouse

An influential industry body has teamed up with a think tank to set out the Great North Plan – a 35-year blueprint for realising the potential of the Northern Powerhouse. The Royal Town Planning Institute and the
Institute for Public Policy Research launched a joint report, which included ‘Powerhouse Pledges’ from local authorities and businesses across the region.

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Transport policy could contribute to health and wellbeing agenda

A new report by the Chartered Institute for Highways and Transportation’s, A Transport Journey to a Healthier Life, has explained how transport policy could contribute to the health and wellbeing agenda.
According to one of the report’s key findings, the local planning system should consider health and wellbeing in decision-making.

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DfT considers M25 double deck carriageway

A double deck carriageway on the M25 is amongst the initial options put forward by the Department for Transport (DfT) to ease capacity problems.
The DfT is exploring ways to improve the performance of the motorway between junctions 10-16, near Heathrow.

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Public transport use forecasted to drop as people return to cars

The Department for Transport (DfT) has said that private car use will be the only mode of transport to not fall between now and 2040. Cycling and bus
travel will be amongst the transport options to drop slightly, with people set to spend more time (on average) driving every day.

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Energy and environment

Developer Aquind to build £1.1bn Portsmouth to France Interconnector

A project to build a 150 mile electricity cable between Portsmouth and Le Havre is set to double the amount of energy the UK currently receives from France.
Funded by Aquind, the project has already signed a connection agreement with National Grid and could supply enough power for four million homes.

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North Sea wind farms proposed to boost low carbon energy

Proposals for an island in the North Sea surrounded by wind farms have been unveiled by Dutch energy firm TenneT, as a way to deliver more low carbon
power to Europe.Dogger Bank, which is about 62 miles off the east coast of England, has been suggested as an ideal location for the 30GW project.

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Coal falls behind solar for first time in UK

More energy was produced by solar power than coal in May for the first time in the UK, according to analysis from Carbon Brief.
Results showed 1.3GW of power was solar generated, around 50 per cent more than the 893GWh generated from coal.

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Pessimistic outlook in energy sector, survey finds

Policy uncertainty and a lack of investment are the main challenges facing the energy industry, according to a survey of industry professionals. Energy Barometer, a survey carried out by the Energy Institute, also found pessimism
in the sector about the Paris Climate Change Agreement, with only 30 per cent agreeing it would keep global temperatures down sufficiently.

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ECC Committee call for radical overhaul of energy network operation

The House of Commons Energy and Climate Change Committee has called on the UK to adopt a US-style approach to electricity transmission network operation. The move would see system operation powers taken from
National Grid and given to an Independent System Operator at a national level and giving a more active role to existing District Network Operators.

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