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Energy Act 2008

Section 29: Requirement for public register

83.This section requires the Secretary of State (or an authority to which the relevant function has been transferred under section 34) to maintain a register containing prescribed information relating to all licences granted under this Chapter, and enables the Secretary of State to prescribe the information that must be included in the register. The information to be included will be prescribed by regulations (subject to the negative resolution procedure – see section 105), and might for example include details of licences issued, revoked or modified, and of any enforcement action taken in relation to those licences. However, provision is made by subsections (2) to (5) for certain information to be excluded from the register. Such information may be excluded by the licensing authority (or an authority to which the function has been transferred under section 34) on the grounds of commercial sensitivity. However, the function of excluding information on national security grounds is given only to the Secretary of State, even where the information relates to a licence granted by the Scottish Ministers. By subsection (6) there will be free public access to the register, but a charge may be made for obtaining copies (which would have to reflect the costs of providing them).

84.This section is similar to section 14 of Food and Environment Protection Act 1985 (c.48) (FEPA), which requires the licensing authority to compile and keep certain particulars of FEPA licences and to make them available for public inspection.

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