More detail in health impact assessment guidance

2nd February 2023

IEMA has published two new impact assessment guides: 'Effective Scoping of Human Health in Environmental Impact Assessment', and 'Determining Significance for Human Health in Environmental Impact Assessment'.

IEMA practitioners identified that existing guidance in these areas did not give sufficient detail for the consideration of health as part of an environmental impact assessment (EIA). The two new guides were developed by IEMA’s Impact Assessment – Health Working Group, which is comprised of leading EIA professionals and key stakeholders from public health organisations from England, Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

The aim of the scoping guide is to enable those commissioning, conducting or reviewing an EIA to determine the relevant health issues. It focuses on clarifying the information to include in an applicant’s Scoping Report. It also supports public health stakeholders in engaging and responding. The new guidance provides a clear definition of what is within the scope of human health. This includes explaining the range of issues that can be relevant within an EIA, including health protection, health promotion and healthcare service considerations. Physical, mental and social dimensions of health are considered, as well as health inequalities. This holistic approach to health is fundamental to a public health understanding of how a project affects the environment.

The aim of the second guide is to explain what ‘significance’ means for ‘human health’ as an EIA topic. It explains how human health significance relates to the degree and context of changes in population health, including effects to vulnerable groups. This is explained with reference to public health evidence sources and consistent judgement criteria.

Visit for further details and to download the guides

Transform articles

Steering group tackles habitats regulations assessment in the 17th edition of the Impact Assessment Outlook Journal

Members of IEMA’s Impact Assessment Network Steering Group have published the 17th edition of the Impact Assessment Outlook Journal, which provides a series of thought pieces on the policy and practice of habitats regulations assessment (HRA).

26th September 2023

Read more

In July, we published the long-awaited update and replacement of one of IEMA’s first published impact assessment guidance documents from 1993, Guidelines for the Environmental Assessment of Road Traffic.

1st August 2023

Read more

Are we losing sight of its intended purpose and what does the future hold for EIA? Jo Beech, Tiziana Bartolini and Jessamy Funnell report.

15th June 2023

Read more

Luke Barrows and Alfie Byron-Grange look at the barriers to adoption of digital environmental impacts assessments

1st June 2023

Read more

Susan Evans and Helen North consider how Environmental Statements can be more accessible and understandable

1st June 2023

Read more

IEMA’s Impact Assessment Network is updating its advice note on non-technical summaries (NTS).

31st May 2023

Read more

Matthew Coe looks at the challenges of securing biodiversity net gain on environmental impact assessment projects

25th May 2023

Read more

Media enquires

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

Find an expert