Electricity Networks (Statutory Easements) Ordinance
The Electricity Networks (Statutory Easements) Ordinance (the Ordinance) provides for the creation of easements to enable the carrying out of works by power companies in connection with the provision of high-voltage electricity networks. Under section 3(1) of the Ordinance, the Governor in Council may, at the request of the power company made in writing to Secretary for Planning, Environment and Lands (SPEL), order that the provision of this Ordinance shall apply to enable the company to carry out such works in accordance with a scheme approved by SPEL.
Provision of the Ordinance
2. With the implementation of a scheme, private land may be affected by overhead power transmission lines and for which rights created under the Ordinance will be extended for exercise by the power company to carry out works in accordance with the terms of the approved scheme. These rights include mainly the right to place and retain any electric line above or below ground across any land situated on the route of the electricity network in the approved scheme (Section 4); and the right to enter on and cross over any land in order to gain access to the site of any works relating to the electricity network (Section 8). The power company therefore has to request the Governor in Council to make an Order under section 3(1) of the Ordinance that the provisions of the Ordinance shall apply to the power company so that the necessary works may be carried out.
3. Under section 10 of the Ordinance, the power company, upon the registration of the Order in the Land Registry, be liable to pay compensation to owners whose land is affected in respect of any diminution of the value of their estates or interests therein attributable to the registration of the Order. Affected landowners may refer their claims to the Lands Tribunal for determination of the amounts of compensation if their claims cannot be settled with the power company by agreement. The power company is also liable under section 11 of the Ordinance for any loss or damage caused by or arising out of the exercise of the rights under the Ordinance.
4. A mechanism for objections from owners prior to the power company exercising any rights conferred by section 4 or 8 is also provided under the Ordinance. Under section 9, the power company is required to serve notice on the affected owners of its intention to exercise the rights. The owners in turn have the right to object by notifying the power company in writing of their objections and the grounds thereof. In the event that agreement between the parties cannot be reached, SPEL, who may direct a public officer to hear the representations of both sides, shall consider the objections and give directions to the power company having regard to the public interest. The power company and the owners affected shall comply with such directions.
Last Updated on 18 August 1998