Soil Surveys, Environmental Assessment & Land Management

Purpose of an Environmental Impact Assessment

The aim of Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is to ensure that a local planning authority (LPA), when deciding whether to grant planning permission for a major development, does so in the full knowledge of the likely significant effects on the environment. The EIA regulations set out a procedure for identifying those projects which should be subject to an Environmental Impact Assessment, and for assessing, consulting and coming to a decision on those projects which are likely to have significant environmental effects.

There are five stages to the EIA process:

  1. Screening: Determination by the LPA as to whether a proposed project falls within the remit of the Regulations.
  2. Scoping: Determination of which environmental issues should be considered in the assessment. The applicant can ask the LPA for their opinion on this.
  3. Preparation: Collecting the information necessary to determine the potential environmental effects of the development, measures that could mitigate the effects and presentation of the results as an Environmental Statement (ES).
  4. Submission and consultation: Once submitted with a planning application, statutory consultees and the public must be given an opportunity to give their views about the proposed development and the quality/appropriateness of the submitted ES.
  5. Decision making: The ES, comments and representations made on it, together with any other information relevant to the decision must be taken into account by the LPA and/or the Secretary of State in deciding whether or not to give consent for the development.

The Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations 2017 transpose the 2014-amended EIA EU Directive into UK law. 


For further information on how we can help with environmental assessments, contact us on +44 (0)1509 670570 or email