Step 4: Final preparations for your permit application
With a completed Step 3 and the signed agreement with the Wind Farm Operator you should be in an excellent position to start your permit application. In this case a permit under the “Waterwet” and this permit is issued by Rijkswaterstaat. The most important aspect of this permit review process is ensuring alignment with and agreement of the Wind Farm operator as they are, in this case, the most important stakeholder. Luckily, in the above Steps 2 and 3 we have done just that, aligning with the Wind Farm Operator up to the point of a written joint statement so this important step should now be quite easy. As a result, the steps are quite straightforward from here on end.
Step 4.1: Apply for the 'Waterwetvergunning'
Applying for the Waterwetvergunning is quite easy!
- Simply go to the website of the Dutch government, the Omgevingsloket www.omgevingsloket.nl (only in Dutch) and click on 'Ik vertegenwoordig een bedrijf en wil...'.
- You enter the website for organisations. Click on the 'Aanvraag/melding' button and start the permit application for your organisation.
Please note, you need the so-called “E-herkenning voor bedrijven” in order to start the process. If you don’t yet have this, then you should apply for it. Note: This will take some time!
Step 4.2: Inform Rijkswaterstaat Zee & Delta
For the “Waterwetvergunning”-application the review will be done by a representative from Rijkswaterstaat Zee & Delta. It could be useful to identify this contact person and inform him up-front of your plans and that he/she may soon expect your permit application. Giving context to your application will support the Rijkswaterstaat representative in reviewing your application.
In addition, it is recommended to consult the Rijkswaterstaat representative of any other stakeholders that may be impacted by your permit application. You may decide to pre-inform those parties prior to or after your permit application of your plans. Please align this properly with Rijkswaterstaat. Furthermore, check with the Rijkswaterstaat representative if any other permits could be applicable to your Multi-Use activity. This may involve other government bodies.
Step 4.3: Consult with 'Staatstoezicht op de Mijnen'
As explained in Step2.1, for compliance with the legal requirements on safety at the North Sea it may be wise to consult with Staatstoezicht op de Mijnen (SodM) prior to submitting your permit application. It will save you time to take any concerns or observations from them into account prior to submitting your permit than afterwards.
You are done! You have applied for a permit with a substantiated and well balanced plan. At this point in time, there's not much you could have done better to increase your chances on obtaining your permit application approved. So what now? Buy a bottle of champagne and wait for the final feedback of Rijkswaterstaat: Good luck with your Multi-Use Plans - you're almost ready to start!