Further to our update on the Scottish Ministers consulting on their draft EIA Regulations, the Welsh Government has also published their proposals for transposing the 2014 EU Directive on EIA into national law. The deadline for responses is 11th November 2016 and you can see the consultation document, which applies to the Town & Country Planning Regime, here.
In addition to transposing the requirements of the Directive, the Government is seeking stakeholders’ views on the following:
- Introducing a time limit for a third party to request a Screening Direction. This must be received no later than 35 days following publication of a local authority’s Screening Opinion on the planning register. The intention is to stop this mechanism being used inappropriately as a tactic to frustrate and delay development
- Increasing the time allowed for issuing a Scoping Opinion following receipt of a request. This will give statutory consultees and officers more time to consider the information properly and issue a less risk averse response. The Government believes that this would facilitate EIA being focused on likely significant effects only, as the Directive requires. This will be important as the Directive requires an Environmental Statement (ES) to be “based on” the Scoping Opinion when one is obtained
- Ways of coordinating EIA and Habitat Regulations Assessment
- The proposed text to ensure that the determining authority has access to sufficient expertise to examine the ES
- The proposed provision where the Welsh Ministers intend to grant development consent for EIA development under Section 141 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 (where land is declared by its owner, following planning refusal that it is incapable of 'reasonably beneficial use').
Barton Willmore will be monitoring progress and will publish an update on the EIA Regulations in due course.
For more information please contact Lucy Wood, Environmental Planning Director or Mark Roberts, Director
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