Shaping the future of EIA practice

12th November 2012

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IEMA hosted the second EIA Quality Mark forum on 17 October in Birmingham, bringing together to discuss environmental impact assessment (EIA) practice

More than 70 leading EIA practitioners, from the Quality Mark’s registrants as well as government departments, were joined by invited guests to discuss EIA practice. The forum, which was held at the Birmingham and Midlands Institute, focused on:

  • proposals for the new EIA Directive;
  • considering climate change and biodiversity in impact assessment; and
  • improving the success of impact assessment in influencing iterative design and mitigation delivery.

The keynote speech was delivered by Louis Meuleman, from the European Commission’s policy office, and gave delegates substantial insight into the commission’s proposals to improve the EIA Directive (2011/92/EU).

The afternoon plenary session examined how climate-change adaptation and biodiversity can be considered in EIA practice. The session included a presentation on the commission’s forthcoming guidance on integrating climate-change adaptation and biodiversity into EIA delivered by Ric Eales, managing director at Collingwood Environmental Planning and co-author of the guidance.

Eales was then joined for a panel discussion on the issue by Delia Shannon, biodiversity manager at Aggregate Industries, and Paul Bradley, a member of Defra’s national adaptation plan team.

On the applied side of EIA, the forum included a number of workshop sessions the output of which will contribute to the creation of three new IEMA practitioner notes, to be launched in April 2013. These sessions were:

  • Delivering environmentally enabled design through EIA – led by Colin Goodrum and Maeve McElvaney from architects LDA Design.
  • Evaluating climate change significance in EIA – led by James Montgomery and Henry Le Brecht from engineering consultancy Mott MacDonald.
  • Delivering EIA’s promises post-consent – led by Martin Broderick, senior technical director at WSP Group.

Further details about the 2012 EIA Quality Mark forum, including all the day’s presentations, are available online.


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