Impact assessment update with Josh Fothergill
- Business & Industry ,
- Built environment ,
- Planning ,
EIA transposition going ahead in Scotland and Wales; European Commission issues guidance; World Bank publishes new policy; and water and impact assessment.
The Scottish and Welsh governments are consulting on amending their EIA regimes to transpose the amended EIA Directive. In Scotland, eight EIA regimes are covered in the consultation, which ends on 31 October. They are: planning; energy; marine; transport and works projects; trunk roads; land drainage; agriculture; and forestry.
IEMA is hosting a workshop on the consultation in Glasgow on 8 September. It will include presentations by Bill Brash, transposition lead at the government, and me. The Scottish government is hosting its own workshop in Edinburgh on 5 October. The focus in Wales is on EIA in planning. Its consultation ends on 11 November and IEMA is in the process of scheduling workshops.
The European Commission has published guidance on how to link EIA, Habitats Directive assessment and other related IA processes. The guide is aimed at interpreting Art 2(3) of the amended EIA Directive’s joint/co-ordinated procedures when multiple impact assessments are required.
UVP Report, the journal of the German EIA Association, has published 11 of a planned 15 papers that consider the implications of the amended EIA Directive’s transposition across different member states. The special issue, published in English and German, was edited by IEMA Fellow, Professor Thomas Fischer and includes a paper on UK implications produced by leading IA thinkers.
In August, the World Bank took a major step forward in the way it would seek to enhance environmental and social risks related to projects it finances by approving a new framework (ESF). Its adoption comes after four years of consultations in more than 60 countries. The new ESF is likely to come into force in early 2018 and will place greater emphasis on using borrower frameworks and capacity building.
The IAIA, with its Ireland and UK branch, ran a successful symposium on water and impact assessment in Lincoln on 1–2 September. It was chaired by IEMA Fellow Dr Ross Marshall, with another Fellow, former Environment Agency chief executive Dr Paul Leinster, providing the opening keynote.
The Environment Agency has successfully prosecuted Southern Water for thousands of illegal raw sewage discharges that polluted rivers and coastal waters in Kent, resulting in a record £90m fine.
In Elliott-Smith v Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, the claimant applied for judicial review of the legality of the defendants’ joint decision to create the UK Emissions Trading Scheme (UK ETS) as a substitute for UK participation in the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS).
None of England’s water and sewerage companies achieved all environmental expectations for the period 2015 to 2020, the Environment Agency has revealed. These targets included the reduction of total pollution incidents by at least one-third compared with 2012, and for incident self-reporting to be at least 75%.
Global greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture are projected to increase by 4% over the next 10 years, despite the carbon intensity of production declining. That is according to a new report from the UN food agency and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), which forecasts that 80% of the increase will come from livestock.
Half of consumers worldwide now consider the sustainability of food and drink itself, not just its packaging, when buying, a survey of 14,000 shoppers across 18 countries has discovered. This suggests that their understanding of sustainability is evolving to include wellbeing and nutrition, with sustainable packaging now considered standard.
Billions of people worldwide have been unable to access safe drinking water and sanitation in their homes during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a progress report from the World Health Organisation focusing on the UN’s sixth Sustainable Development Goal (SDG 6) – to “ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all by 2030”.
New jobs that help drive the UK towards net-zero emissions are set to offer salaries that are almost one-third higher than those in carbon-intensive industries, research suggests.