The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue T.D, has announced the commencement of a review of the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) (Agriculture) Regulations and the opening of a public consultation to inform the review process.  

The EIA (Agriculture) Regulations apply to three different on-farm activities:

  1. Restructuring of rural land holdings (boundary removal and/or recontouring of land),
  2. Commencing to use uncultivated land or semi-natural areas for intensive agriculture, and
  3. Land drainage works on lands used for agriculture (excluding drainage or reclamation of wetlands).

The objective of the public consultation process is to invite stakeholders to feed into a review of these Regulations which were first published in 2011. 

In opening the public consultation, Minister McConalogue said:

We have committed to a review of these Regulations in the Programme of Government and our CAP Strategic Plan, and I am delighted to announce the opening of this consultation.

This review gives us an opportunity to consider and update the Regulations as necessary to ensure they are balanced in terms of allowing agricultural changes which do not significantly affect the environment while also providing protection for land and biodiversity features of environmental importance.

Minister of State Pippa Hackett added:

It is vital that we protect environmentally important habitats and the species that depend on these habitats.

This review is an important Programme for Government commitment and it will help us to ensure that the EIA Regulations are strengthened where necessary to provide robust environmental safeguards.

I encourage all interested stakeholders to get involved in this consultation process, which will play an important role in informing the future Regulations.

Members of the public are advised to email your observations or comments to EIAReview@agriculture.gov.ie by 10/07/2023.

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Why are we launching a public consultation?

The EIA (Agriculture) Regulations were first introduced in 2011.

Given the passage of time since their introduction there is a need to review the Regulations and make changes where necessary.

The review will cover the Regulations in their entirety, and the Department will welcome submissions on all parts of the Regulations including the current thresholds.  

How to get involved

The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine is inviting all interested parties to make a submission to inform the legislative process. 

To get involved, please email your observations or comments to EIAReview@agriculture.gov.ie by 10/07/2023.

To assist you, relevant documents including an unofficial consolidated version of the Regulations can be accessed at gov.ie – Environmental Impact Assessment (Agriculture) Regulations (www.gov.ie) 

Terms and Conditions

All submissions and comments submitted to the Department for this consultation are subject to release under the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act 2014 and the European Communities (Access to Information on the Environment) Regulations 2007-2014. Submissions are also subject to Data Protection legislation.

Personal, confidential or commercially sensitive information should not be included in your submission, and it will be presumed that all information contained in your submission is releasable under the Freedom of Information Act 2014.

What we will do with your response

The information provided by respondents will be used to inform the development of new EIA (Agriculture) Regulations.

Please note that submissions received may be made available on the Department’s website, unless otherwise requested. 

In any event, all submissions received will be subject to the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act and Data Protection legislation.

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