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Environmental Impact Assessment

This process ensures that the environmental effects of development proposals are investigated, understood and taken into account before they proceed.

Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) may be required for:

  • proposals requiring planning permission
  • proposals requiring Electricity Act consent
  • motorway and trunk road proposals
  • forestry and agriculture related projects
  • marine works
  • oil and gas pipelines

The assessment:

  • is carried out by – or on behalf of – the developer or project proposer
  • covers all stages of the project – from site surveys and construction to operation, monitoring and decommissioning
  • report is submitted with the consent application

Scottish Natural Heritage is consulted on all proposals that require EIA.

This has been brought into practice in Scotland through various statutory regulations. These govern the assessment process and specify which projects require assessment.

How we can help developers

We can provide advice and guidance on how to assess the environmental impacts of your project or development.

You may wish to begin by looking at:

Contact us if we can help you with your EIA.

Other sources of guidance

Scottish Government Circular 3/2011: The Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) (Scotland) Regulations 2011

A User’s Guide to the Environmental Impact Assessment (Scotland) Regulations 2011

Guidelines for Ecological Impact Assessment in the UK and Ireland: Terrestrial, Freshwater and Coastal

Forestry Commission Scotland website – Environmental Impact Assessment

Guidelines on Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for Agriculture

Environmental Impact Assessment Practical Guidelines Toolkit for Marine Fish Farming

Guidance on the Electricity Works (Environmental Impact Assessment)(Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2008

The Marine Works (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations 2007