Name of the tool
Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) and Environmental statement (ES)
Who applied the tool in the case?
New Tredegar Regeneration Scheme
The EIA was carried out, on behalf of the project promoter, by a specialist environmental consultant.
Ebbw Vale Railway
The EIA and production of the ES for the new stations for the Ebbw Vale Railway was produced internally by Capita Symmonds, a consultancy working for a consortium of the five surrounding local authorities. The EIA and ES was produced in consultation with the Environment Agency and Countryside Commission for Wales. The statement contains information from external consultants on specialist areas such as bat conservation and Architectural heritage. The local authority environment/ biodiversity officers were also consulted for their local knowledge.
Awel Aman Tawe Community Wind farm
Awel Aman Tawe employed Dulas, renewable energy consultants to oversee the EIA. Dulas then subcontracted specialist consultants for specific areas of the assessment.
North Hoyle Offshore Wind farm
The EIA was completed in house by National Wind Power, prior to applying for planning consent.
Baglan Energy Park Phase II
Two EIA´s were carried out at the site. The first was undertaken by ExCal and covered the outline planning application for reclamation and remediation of Phase 2. The second was by Chapman Warren and covered the planning application for development of the site. The two EIA´s were complementary to avoid duplication of effort.
Millennium Coastal Path
Richards Moorehead & Laing Ltd, environmental consultants, were employed by Carmarthenshire County Council to produce and EIA and ES for the Millennium Coastal Park proposal.
Time taken to fully apply the tool
A full EIA will typically take between 3 and 9 months to complete, although this is dependant on the type and nature of the proposals being assessed. Complex proposals are likely to take longer to assess.
Any other interesting information about the tool
The following is an extract from the EU’s Environmental Integration Manual (2002) on why EIA is useful:
• Identification of potential adverse environmental effects of a proposal prior to impact occurring. This allows opportunity for any impacts to be mitigated or alternatives considered in the event that potential effects may not be manageable.
• Improved understanding of environmental effects associated with infrastructure, industry and other projects and the effectiveness of mitigation measures.
• Better informed decision-making through consultation with regulatory authorities, interested parties and the public.
• Provides for public involvement in decision-making which increases public awareness and knowledge, and provides them with opportunities to influence decision-making.
• Collation and provision of local environmental information.
• Provides opportunities to: modify and improve the design of a proposal; ensure that resources are used efficiently; enhance the social aspects related to the proposal; identify measures for monitoring and managing impacts.
• Monitoring the environmental impacts of a project throughout its life cycle allows the actual impacts of the project to be identified and compared to impacts predicted in the EIA.
In contrast some criticisms of the EIA process involve:
"The quality of the EIA process, and especially the EIS, are the key for an effective EIA.... There are few formal measures in place for the overall control of the quality of the EIA procedures. The Directive itself is rather weak on this point and focuses more on the EIA procedural aspects. Ensuring quality control in EIA is largely left to the competent authorities and the checks provided by judicial review processes. The lack of central monitoring of the key stages of EIA make it difficult for Member States to ensure that their EIA systems are consistently and correctly applied. There are some examples of innovative practice, with some Member States making use of postdecision monitoring of projects to ensure the quality of the outcome of the EIA process."
Report from the Commission to the European Parliament and the Council On the Application and Effectiveness of the EIA Directive (Directive 85/337/EEC as
amended by Directive 97/11/EC)
Case study/ies where tool is in use
Ebbw Valley Railway
North Hoyle Offshore wind farm
Awel Aman Tawe Community Energy Project.
New Tredegar Regeneration Scheme
Millennium Coastal Park
Baglan Energy Park Phase 2
Project for a New Bridge over The Danube (Vidin -Calafat)