Under Article 2 of the EIA Directive, projects likely to have significant effects on the environment by virtue of their nature, size, or location are made subject to a requirement for development consent and an assessment with regard to their effects. ‘Development consent’ is defined under the EIA Directive as ‘the decision of the competent authority or authorities which entitles the developer to proceed with the project.‘
The European Commission issued guidance on the EIA Directive (‘the Guidance’). In line with the Guidance, the EIA procedure consists of the following steps:
- project screening;
- project description and consideration of alternatives;
- impact assessment;
- mitigation measures;
- public participation;
- monitoring and auditing measures;
- decision-making; and
- report and review.
Projects requiring an EIA are specified in Annex 1 of the EIA Directive. Projects specified in Annex 2 of the EIA Directive may be subject to an EIA upon assessment of the Member States, based on either a case-by-case examination; or thresholds or criteria set by that Member State (Article 4).
In addition, the European Commission published comprehensive guidance and research on Environmental Impact Assessments.
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The Directive 2011/92/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 13 December 2011 on the Assessment of the Effects of Certain Public and Private Projects on the Environment (‘the EIA Directive’) aims to regulate the assessment of the environmental effects of those public and private projects which are likely to have significant effects on the environment, with the exception of projects the details of which are adopted by a specific act of national legislation.
Last Updated: July 30, 2019
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