Case law >> EIA screening and mitigation measures

11th March 2013


Related Topics

Related tags

  • Local government ,
  • Construction ,
  • Consultancy

Author

IEMA

LexisPSL's Jen Hawkins and George Hobson on a High Court ruling that confirms EIA screenings can consider mitigation

In TWS v Manchester City Council [2013] All ER (D) 203, an application for judicial review of the authority’s decision to grant planning permission for a football stadium was dismissed.

The High Court agreed with the authority’s conclusion that an environment impact assessment (EIA) was not required, and that the council was entitled to consider mitigation measures when assessing the significant impacts of the proposed development.

The court upheld the decision by the council to grant planning permission, saying the authority’s screening opinion was not, as the claimant alleged, “irrational”. According to the judgment, the council had: directed itself on the applicable statutory requirements; took into account government guidance; and applied the relevant criteria.

Judge Lindblom ruled that it was up to the court to intervene where an authority has acted “irrationally”, but not to quash a decision just because someone might disagree with it.

The effect on the environment had to be “significant” for an EIA to be required, but significance was not a “hard-edged concept” – the assessment of what was significant involved the exercise of judgment.

The screening opinion was also lawful on the basis that it depended on possible future mitigation.

While an authority cannot conclude that a development is unlikely to have significant effects on the environment simply because all such effects were likely to be eliminated by mitigation, it can take into account remedial measures contemplated by conditions and/or undertakings when completing an EIA screening opinion.


Transform articles

Land and Soil in Environmental Impact Assessment

IEMA’s Impact Assessment Network has recently been busy finalising a major guidance publication on land and soils in environmental impact assessment.

23rd September 2021

Read more

The Environment Bill returned to Parliament following the Queen’s speech and is making progress through the House of Lords.

30th July 2021

Read more

In March, the Environmental Audit Committee kicked off an inquiry focused on improving the sustainability of the built environment sector.

30th July 2021

Read more

Defra has completed a consultation on its draft environmental policy statement. This focuses on five core principles that policymakers will be expected to consider:

30th July 2021

Read more

In June 2021, the UK’s governing Conservative Party lost a by-election in Chesham and Amersham, a seat it had held for 47 years. The principal reasons reported as the cause of this defeat were proposed planning reforms and the promotion of housebuilding on greenfield sites across the south of England.

30th July 2021

Read more

As we celebrate the 10-year anniversary of the EIA Quality Mark, IEMA can announce that, during the past 12 months, the scheme has undergone a thorough review of practice, including stakeholder consultation with registrants and assessors, in order to improve it.

28th May 2021

Read more

We are anticipating the launch of new Principles for Cultural Heritage Impact Assessment for the sector in July.

28th May 2021

Read more

The delivery of effective outcomes for the environment, communities and development is a team effort, and more so when it comes to consenting projects that undergo Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA).

26th April 2021

Read more

The end of 2020 saw four of our members step down, having completed their three years’ service.

29th January 2021

Read more

Media enquires

Looking for an expert to speak at an event or comment on an item in the news?

Find an expert