EIA Update | January 2012

16th January 2012

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IEMA's update on the publication of new EIA legislation and guidance

Consolidated EIA Directive

A new year, a new EIA Directive? Late last year a “new” Directive on environmental impact assessment was adopted – and will shortly be published in the Official Journal of the European Union. This is technically a new Directive, but it simply consolidates the original EIA Directive (85/337/EEC) and the content contained in its three amendments into a single document.

The practical impact will be the need to refer in future to the new the Directive. The consolidation is part of the European Commission’s ongoing review of the EIA Directive. The single legal text of the 2011 Directive will make discussions on the planned revisions easier. The commission is currently completing its impact assessment of different options for revision and will be drafting a revised Directive during the first half of 2012. As such, members can expect to see a draft of the proposals by mid to late summer.

EIA Regulations update

Wales: The Welsh Assembly government plans to consult on revised town and country planning EIA Regulations in February. This will also consolidate the numerous amendments into a new, single regulation later in the year.

England: The launch of EIA regulatory guidance is now not expected until February at the earliest due to departmental sign-off processes.

Ecosystem services in EIA

IEMA has launched an e-briefing on considering ecosystem services in EIAs. The online document is available for members to download and is designed to stimulate consideration of ecosystem services in practice. It explains the concept of ecosystem services and their background before considering how to integrate them into the various parts of the EIA process.

EIA Quality Mark webinars

IEMA has started delivering regular EIA webinars via the EIA Quality Mark scheme. So far, EIA webinars have been delivered on communications, ecology and evaluating the significance of impacts. If you missed any of these you can “listen again” by selecting the relevant event on IEMA's website. The next webinar in the series is: Traffic assessment – 1 March, 12.30–1.15pm.

Effective non-technical summaries

IEMA has been concerned with the standard of some non-technical summaries (NTS) in EIAs and has therefore released a short two-page e-brief on developing an effective NTS. The document provides helpful tips on how to keep an NTS short, focused and on message. It is available for members to download.


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