Fees Charged for Applications under the Electricity Act 1989

Closed 28 May 2018

Opened 19 Feb 2018

Feedback Updated 4 Jan 2019

We Asked

For your view on proposals to revise the arrangements for fees payable by developers to the Scottish Government for the determination of applications for electricity generating stations and overhead electric lines under sections 36 and 37 of the Electricity Act 1989. Revisions were proposed in order to more accurately reflect the costs of the resources required to determine the applications.

You Said

We received 38 consultation responses. The majority of respondents agreed that, in principle, application fees should be revised to maintain and improve our service levels. There was widespread disagreement with the level of increases proposed, however: the consensus from industry respondents was that the increases proposed were disproportionately high, although other respondents queried whether the increases were enough and how quickly they would become out of date. Comments were also received suggesting that the fee categories and bands should be reconsidered, service improvements should be made, and that greater remuneration should be given to Planning Authorities.

We Did

We published on 4 January 2019 the analysis of the responses to the consultation. https://www.gov.scot/publications/fees-charged-applications-under-electricity-act-1989-analysis-consultation-responses/
We published on 4 January 2019 the Scottish Government response to the consultation, setting out full details of the revisions which Ministers intend to implement. https://www.gov.scot/publications/fees-charged-applications-under-electricity-act-1989-scottish-government-response/
It is intended that the revised fees will be implemented by amendment of the Electricity (Applications for Consent) Regulations 1990. This would be subject to a negative procedure in the Scottish Parliament. Ministers aim to implement the revised fees by May 2019.

Published Responses

View submitted responses where consent has been given to publish the response.


Scottish Ministers are responsible for determining applications for consent for electricity generating stations with installed capacity exceeding 1MW (offshore) and 50 MW (onshore) and overhead power lines in Scotland under sections 36 and 37 of the Electricity Act 1989 respectively. The Electricity (Applications for Consent) Regulations
1990 and Electricity Works (Environmental Impact Assessment) (Scotland)
Regulations 2017 apply to such applications, which are processed on behalf of
Scottish Ministers by the Scottish Government’s Energy Consents Unit (onshore) and Marine Scotland (offshore).

We are reviewing the fees that we charge, to maintain service delivery and to support future improvement. This consultation sets out our proposals in detail and seeks your views on them.

Why We Are Consulting

In accordance with the Scottish Public Finance Manual, the Scottish Government adopts the principle that there should be full cost recovery for all public services, including those associated with discharging consenting functions under the Electricity Act 1989.

We believe the proposed fee increases are fully justified and recognise the changes to Ministers’ administrative functions and working practices, and are a better reflection of the costs of providing and continuing to improve our service.

Scottish Ministers would welcome your comments and suggestions about the future of the current statutory arrangements for fees payable under sections 36, 36C and 37 of the Electricity Act 1989. Your views will help inform our decision.

Download the consultation paper.

View accessible HTML version here.

Update May 2018

In response to queries received, supplementary information on the estimated costs of processing applications is now available from the following link. Additionally, the closing date of the consultation has been extended by two weeks from 14 May to 28 May 2018.

Download the supplementary information.

What Happens Next

After the consultation has concluded, responses will be analysed. After careful consideration of matters raised in the consultation responses, Ministers may agree to make changes to the relevant legislation governing energy consents fees including, for example, the Electricity (Applications for Consent) Regulations 1990 and Electricity Works (Environmental Impact Assessment) (Scotland) Regulations 2017.


  • People of Scotland


  • Energy