EIA Update | January 2013

14th January 2013

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  • Local government ,
  • Construction ,
  • EU



IEMA's latest update on legislation and guidance relating to environmental impact assessment (EIA) including news on the chancellor's plans to consult on revised EIA guidance and Ireland's review of strategic environmental assessment (SEA)

Chancellor takes aim at EIA

The autumn statement included reference to EIA by revealing plans for the department for local government to consult on both revised EIA guidance, before the 20 March 2013, and on revising the EIA Regulations, with the intention of increasing the Schedule 2 thresholds.

Secretary of state Eric Pickles followed up the announcement by the chancellor with a statement to parliament that heavily critiqued the European Commission’s plans to revise the EIA Directive (2011/92/EU), and indicated a desire to explore scaling back impact assessments.

Marine EIA: online conference

In addition to IEMA’s regular EIA webinars (below), the Institute is running a week-long series of lunchtime webinars between 28 January and 1 February on the theme of the environment in marine consenting.

The webinars will have an overarching aim of enhancing knowledge around marine EIA and is supported by IEMA’s EIA Quality Mark partners, although each day will focus on different elements, including regulator views, offshore renewables, onshore interactions and marine ecosystem services. Go to iema.net/events to book.

Future of SEA in Ireland

The five statutory SEA authorities in Ireland have launched a new report entitled Review of SEA effectiveness in Ireland. It identifies successes and challenges in SEA and is accompanied by a five-year action plan, which is designed to improve practice by strengthening governance, providing new guidance and improving training and data management. Both the report and the action plan can be downloaded from the Environmental Protection Agency website.

Health impact assessments

The Wales health impact assessment (HIA) support unit has published new guidance, entitled HIA: a practical guide. The guide is a comprehensive and practical toolkit for practitioners and those interested in HIA, containing information on relevant Welsh national and local policy.

Health and climate change

The Health Protection Agency has launched a report providing scientific evidence of the wider risks to public health from climate change in the UK. The report complements the existing health and wellbeing section of the UK’s climate change risk assessment evidence report, which was laid before parliament in January last year.


28 February – Noise and EIAs
28 March – EIA’s role at public inquiry

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