With today’s vote by the European Parliament to adopt substantive amendments to the EIA Directive, IEMA has welcomed the inclusion of a key revision which enhances the role of Environment and Sustainability professionals, in what it has called a “big win”.

Revisions to Article 5(3) of the EIA Directive will see all future EIA Reports (the revised name for Environmental Statements) prepared and examined by “competent experts”. Further to this, the crucial EIA Co-ordinator role will be enhanced by amendments to the definition of alternatives and through enhanced support to ensure environmental mitigation is delivered.

IEMA’s lead on EIA Josh Fothergill said today: “This is a really positive move on the part of the European Parliament, which will ensure major development proposals across the EU will benefit from the role of competent experts being formalised. Environment and Sustainability Professionals will no longer have to rely on consenting authorities to condition their unrivalled contributions, which improve project design and minimise environmental impacts, ensuring they are delivered post-consent.”

Other key amendments that have been adopted in today’s vote include: providing a definition of EIA, the introduction of new topics such as biodiversity, human health and land and the inclusion of monitoring requirements, addressing a major flaw in the European EIA system.

IEMA and its members have played a leading role in setting the context for the revisions to the EIA Directive. The Directive's review began in 2009, with IEMA providing practitioner evidence and comment to the evolving proposals.

12th March 2014