Most of Elia’s underground facilities run along public roads. However, for technical or other reasons our underground cables are sometimes installed cross-country. The pylons for overhead lines are often also located on farmland.
With the declaration of public utility provided by the authorities, Elia is legally entitled to install above-ground infrastructure on private land.
In this context, a good relationship with the relevant farmers is essential for the installation of new infrastructure and maintenance of existing infrastructure. Elia wants to operate as transparently as possible and has joined forces with Boerenbond, Algemeen Boerensyndicaat and Fédération Wallonne de l’Agriculture to develop a memorandum of understanding (in French) which includes the negotiating framework, compensation plan and standard agreements.
The agreement between Elia and the farmers’ organisations has two key components:
- The first part comprises the terms of agreement and compensation for owners and operators of farmland with respect to the permanent installation of high-voltage infrastructure. In such cases, the owner sells or leases an easement for the relevant surface area. The operator receives compensation for the presence of above-ground infrastructure. Standard agreements were also established (available in annexes 1, 2, 3 and 6).
- The second part is comprised of the agreements with regard to the farmers on the use of land and compensation for damage caused by the work on high-voltage facilities. A standard document for the site description and damage assessment, plus a list of compensation for crop and structural damage (listed in annexes 7, 8 and 9 of the memorandum of understanding).