Article 6 Appropriate Assessment

INIS consultants are qualified to carry out Appropriate Assessments from screening stage right through to final stages, if deemed necessary. We have completed Appropriate Assessments for projects in freshwater, marine and terrestrial environments throughout Ireland and the UK, for both statutory and private bodies, where proposed developments had the potential to impact on Natura 2000 sites.

The Birds and Habitats Directives set out various procedures and obligations in relation to nature conservation management in Ireland and that of Natura 2000 sites (sites established with the introduction of the Birds Directive in 1979 and the Habitats Directive in 1992) and their habitats and species in particular. A key protection mechanism is the requirement to consider the possible nature conservation implications of any plan or project on the Natura 2000 site network before any decision is made to allow that plan or project to proceed. Not only is every new plan or project captured by this requirement but each plan or project, when being considered for approval at any stage, must take into consideration the possible effects it may have in combination with other plans and projects when going through the process known as Appropriate Assessment. The concept of plan and project is extremely broad and is not limited to development planning and development management, covered by the Planning and Development Acts 2000-2006.

The obligation to undertake appropriate assessment derives from Article 6(3) and 6(4) of the Habitats Directive and both involve a number of steps and tests that need to be applied in sequential order. Article 6(3) is concerned with the strict protection of sites, while Article 6(4) is the procedure for allowing derogation from this strict protection in certain restricted circumstances.

Contact us today if you need an Appropriate Assessment completed for your project.